Our flight from Brussels to Dublin was delayed by two miserable hours, one of which was spent in the airport and one on the tarmac at Brussels Airport. While at Brussels airport, a kind man with the most extraordinary socks admired our children. He looked vaguely familiar and I asked had we met but he said he thought not. We chatted on, he was pleasant to the children. He looked v. familiar. Did he live in Brussels? No. Some further discussion revealed that he was “in the grocery trade”. And then I recognised Supermarket colossus Senator Fergal Quinn and I tell you what, come the next senate elections, he’s going to get my vote – he was both pleasant and unassuming. No, I have no idea what his politics are, it just shows, it’s still worth kissing babies in politics. We met lots of other people we know and lots of them knew him as well so in the end we had a big group of people chatting together around our fratchety children. Alas, though everyone said how lovely they were (tactful people), nobody had any occasion to remark that they were well-behaved because we were not. The plane offered us the traditional helping of MEPs (Prionsias de Rossa and Avril Doyle both looking a bit grumpy) and, of course, Commissioner McCreevy sitting up the front looking a bit self conscious, I thought.
Anyway, they were obviously all a bit peckish as the flight was two hours delayed with the deeply unwelcome result that those in the middle of the plane had a choice of crisps or shortbread for lunch. We arrived in Dublin airport crabby and hungry and the purchase of two sandwiches for the scandalous price of 9 euros only abated one of these problems. I am not a fan of Dublin airport but I will say for them that the presence of Santa dispensing sweets in the arrivals hall certainly built up a bit of good will. We knew he was the real Santa because he knew we were going to see Grandma and Granddad. Imagine.
However, all that was yesterday and today has been a much better and more peaceful day. And we don’t have to travel again until Monday when we get the train to Cork.
Happy Winter Solstice.