I almost never sit in traffic. Mostly I’m on the bike. And we have good public transport links. Today, I was reminded of how easy things are normally. I basically spent the day in the car. Sigh.
Daniel pulled something at GAA last night. He’s alright but I decided to drive him to his physics course this morning. Mr. Waffle suggests that we blow up this headline from the paper and stick it on the radiator. Because it is true.
Anyway, after dropping him in town at 9, I went home, had breakfast and got Michael out of bed and we both went back into town to collect Dan. The traffic was awful and we only got in at 10.30. Then the three of us drove out to a university campus where the boys were going to the open day. They could have got the bus or cycled but with Dan’s sore leg, I thought I would give them a lift and combine it with a visit to my mother’s friend who lives nearby. Huge mistake. Traffic was backed up along the dual carriageway and it took us ages to get in. The campus was designed in the 60s and 70s when the car was king. The university moved from the city to the suburbs alongside a busy dual carriageway and the brutalist architects got to do their worst. The consequence is a campus which is unlovely. However, it is a very good university and many of my friends and relations regard it with a fondness which, in my view, borders on lunacy.
After finally dropping off the boys, I went to my mother’s friend’s house and left her at 12.30. I’d arranged to pick up the boys at 3. As I slogged home through the traffic to get my lunch, it became clear that I would never make it there and back again for 3, so I stopped off in a distant suburb for lunch. I went to a restaurant which was there when Mr. Waffle and I lived there many years ago and which we rarely visited as it didn’t allow bookings and there was always a queue out the door. There was no queue out the door today which should have been a sign. The decor appeared unchanged since I last went there about 20 years ago. The food was pretty awful but, look, it met a need. I wouldn’t say I’d be rushing back now.
Google maps told me that I could get to the campus in 10 minutes from my lunch venue. What it didn’t tell me was once I gained access to the campus, which is large, it would be traffic choked and it would take me 20 minutes to drive across it to where I had arranged to pick up the boys.
I got there in the end. Michael emerged full of enthusiasm, he really enjoyed the talks. Daniel was less convinced – having been to Trinity last weekend, he liked the atmosphere there better. Sadly, Michael couldn’t go to the Trinity open day because I had hauled him off to Kilkenny. To be honest, I just didn’t think a university open day would be much use. Having basically grown up on campus on UCC where both my parents lectured and never for a second having contemplated any other university my situation was a bit different. Daniel found the Trinity event really good and both of them found today useful. Who’d have thought it? They will be going to yet another university open day next weekend but I have already alerted them that they will be travelling by bike.