Saturday 17 May 2014

Where were you when . . .

. . . the "Dublin and Monaghan" bombs went off at tea-time forty years ago? I was 2km away at Lansdowne Road cooking up a meal with The Beloved.  I'd moved out of digs into a flat shared with four other grown-ups.  That meant that I could bring TB home to experience some simple domestic pleasures without the landlady having the vapours about what she imagined we were doing in the kitchen.  I remember it was a sunny afternoon but if you told me Met Eireann has records saying it was overcast, I wouldn't dispute it.  I think we were in the kitchen when we heard a !crump! in the distance. There was no television or wireless in the house, so we just carried on cooking and then eating until it was time for TB to return to her dark hostel on Stephen's Green.

I could have been closer as I was then a student in TCD and the third bomb exploded where Nassau Street changes its name to South Leinster Street: right beside TCD's Moyne Institute.  As a 1st Yr student, I might not even have crossed the threshold of that building which then as now housed the Microbiology Department. The wall and railings of the TCD campus were blackened for a long time afterwards and you can still see the chips which the blast took out of the wall beside where the stolen Austin filled with explosives was parked.  I remembered where I was when JFK was assassinated 50 years ago last November;  Ditto 9/11; but  I can't even remember, nor do I care, which year or month Princess Di died.  Oh yes, and I've no idea where I'll be 40 years in the future. As my father's grandmother lived to 103 and my mother's mother survived to 108 and my own mother is still entirely functional at 94, it's likely I'll still be blob blob blobbin' alonnnng.

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