" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)



IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - ooops! It seems that our entry application was "not completed in time to be considered.." (?) and, as such, we are not now in the running. But we wish all the best to the successful entrants and to the organisers, and we hope all goes well for them on the day!


Wednesday, July 13, 2016

FAIRYTALE OF NEW YORK. BUT THIS ONE'S FOR REAL!

PREMISES TEMPORARILY VACATED. HOLIDAYS. NEW YORK. BACK A.S.A.C.R.O!*

We touch down in JFK on Saturday, 16th July 2016, at about 2pm local time - myself and the four girlfriends and as much baggage as we're allowed : this is a five-week holiday (YES! 5 WEEKS!! ) so there won't be any crazy spending sprees (although we will squeeze in one trip each to Jersey Gardens and Woodbury Common. Maybe two..!) nor, indeed, would there be a five-week holiday at all only for the fact that our friends, colleagues and comrades in that great city have, once again, offered the five of us the full use of empty apartments they own in the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and Hell's Kitchen, no charge (but we'll take them out to An Béal Bocht for lunch!), and we have also been gifted the use of a town car and our usual (!) driver, Joel, for the five weeks!

Our first two weeks will be happily spent in the Bronx, courtesy of Shay and his girlfriend, Emma, where we'll be 'minded' by Pat, Frank and Sam and it is in that lovely borough that the five of us have been invited to two roof-top parties, both of which, naturally, we'll attend! Our previous stays in the Bronx were absolute magic - the people we were with and the dozens upon dozens of locals that we spent our days with, the venues they took us to, the contrasting atmospheres we shared with them, the trips to local parks and pubs (hello all in the Celtic House, MacDwyers and Séan Mulligans!!), the Bronx Zoo and the Bronx Mall, to name just a very small number of the attractions in that borough which, along with Union Square in Manhattan, are two of the best and must-see locations in that great city.



For our third week, we're booked in to our usual lovely apartment in Queens, where Kev, Heno, Mel, Larry and the girls will spoil us rotten before unleashing us to wreak havoc on the neighbourhood - in the nicest possible way, of course! - then to Harlem (East 101/Lex!) for our fourth week, which is a fantastic place - much like the Bronx - in that the people that live there are real down-to-earth, with no airs or graces, and we have always got on famously with all the Harlemites that it has been our pleasure to share company with - they, like their Bronxite 'cousins', seem to share an affinity with us Irish, in that they have much the same sense of humour and outlook on life. A 'home from home' for us, if you like but, as in any city or town - in any country - 'home' sometimes just has to be anywhere that's warm and relatively safe and, in instances like that, a ten-minute chat to a person less fortunate than yourself can be as welcome to all involved as the cash or food you give them. And we enjoy those occasions : there but for the grace of God.

Our fourth week will see us graciously ensconced in a three-bed duplex apartment among our new and old friends in Hell's Kitchen (hello again, Liz and Susie, and all those we agree with in singing 'To Hell with Clinton Hill'!!) - we are looking forward, again, to our tours of the taverns and speakeasies and basketball courts and local parks and sight-seeing on the Hudson River docks and so much else - too much, indeed, to cover in just one week. But we'll certainly give it a good shot, and you lot know what to expect this time!

Our fifth and last week will be enjoyed in Brooklyn, which means meeting up again with our dance buddies in Williamsburg (and its lovely bridge) and our surfer dude friends in Coney Island - I could show you some pics from our last outings there but you'd have to prove that you're over 21 first. And even then, they'd be heavily censored! That's enough now (and for ever!) about 'last week' holiday stuff - we don't want to know. The five of us are gonna let rip, again, on this holiday and we're really looking forward to every hour of it, which we will gladly spend in the best of company in that amazing city. We'll be back home on the 20th August next and should be capable of putting a blog post together within days. I said "should be..." !

(*A.S.A.C.R.O - 'As Soon As Cash Runs Out'!)

Thanks for the visit - and have a nice day, y'all...!

Sharon.