Belgium – August/September 2018

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Day 1 – to Brussels

It’s virtually impossible to think of Belgium without that most chief of Belgian exports flooding one’s mind. Yes, we’re all thinking of the same thing….Gotye (that fella who had that song once)! We will be seeking the lesser known Belgian joys however, and hoping to find the odd beer and maybe even some chocolate. Yes, Belgium does beer and chocolate too.

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Toronto – December 2017

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After just over two weeks in Cuba we’ll be spending a couple of days in Toronto to ease us back into reality. With a differential of approximately twenty three degrees Celsius, it promises to be quite the jolt back into winter. Now if we can just navigate our way through José Marti International Airport we’ll be doing fine.

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Cuba – November/December 2017

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Day 1: to Havana

A panic descends as we try to organise transport to the airport. The wonderful Ann Brennan has a bug and can’t provide us with a lift. MyTaxi tells me everything is booked up. Images of us pretending to have been in Cuba flash through our minds but in the end we snag a ride and make it in pretty good time with the border checks and controls going rather swimmingly.

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New York – September 2017

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Day 1: to Long Island City

Incredibly, it’s been 12 years since I was last in the USA. Chicago and New York all the way back in 2005. It’s taken the relocation of my good friend John to draw me back, and I am very much looking forward to it. To top it off nicely, we have The War on Drugs in Central Park to warm up a Friday evening and to sweeten the deal even further; we’ll be treated to Interpol in some kind of former tennis stadium on Saturday. A sort of festival of our own.

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Ryan Adams – September 2017

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Admittedly, I was not completely up for this concert. I could claim tiredness, Monday blues or whatever, but the fact is I just wasn’t feeling it. Having had no joy selling the tickets, the only option remaining was to force my head into the right space. By 8pm, I was rather looking forward to the show. One or two Guinness for me, a couple of hot whiskeys for Orla, in Brogan’s and we’re there. About 20:40 the place clears out leaving us and the bar staff. It’s our cue to head into the Olympia, having completely lost track of time.

 

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Sligo – August 2017

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Day 1:

Orla and I are off to Sligo, or just beyond, to meet up with Lisa, Roberto and Rocky for a couple of nights. We have a good three and a bit hour spin ahead of us on a Friday just before lunch time. A much needed break after all the hassle from our neighbours finally coming to an end having escalated beyond ludicrous over the last few weeks. By the time we get to Carrick-on-Shannon the traffic is nuts, apparently there is no alternative route. Thankfully we’re going in the opposite direction! We’ll have to make a mental note to be past this point before it gets ridiculous on Sunday.

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U2 – Croke Park, Dublin (22nd July 2017)

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By some twisted fortune we’ve ended up with two tickets to U2’s Joshua Tree tour in Croke Park, but in different sections of the stadium. Despite all attempts to swap them for two standing, or even just adjacent seats it seems we are doomed to sit, each alone, amongst the 82,000 odd fans. Not that I’m complaining, we’re part of the lucky ones who got our hands on tickets, and amidst the even luckier few who got a gift of tickets. So, you know, first world problems and all that. I had tried for weeks to remedy our situation, but had failed at all avenues. Then, hours out from the show kicking off we get somewhat sorted. Two tickets beside each other. Now all we had to do was sell two tickets to a U2 concert in Dublin. A fucking easy task one might think…….but they would be so surprisingly wrong it hurts.

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