Showing posts from May, 2016

So .. what are the ten best pubs in Galway?


For a city with a population of less than 80,000 souls, Galway certainly tends to punch above its weight. 
Recently designated a UNESCO City of Film, and currently in the reckoning to become European Capital of Culture in 2020, it was voted the friendliest city in the world by a New York-based magazine late last year.
According to Travel + Leisure magazine, Galway stood out due to its festive nature, lively population, and the love of music which ensures you will always find a talented busker on the city’s narrow streets or a rousing session in one of its hospitable pubs.
More than 23,000 full-time students help the city’s bars to maintain a thriving trade through the wet and windy winter months, but it’s in summer time that Ireland’s western capital really comes into its own.
There is hardly a weekend between April and October when the city’s citizens are not celebrating one festival or another, from the major international Arts Festival in July to r…

Have we really moved on?


When my best friend Joe died, I was an angry young man. We got drunk, we got stoned, we attended the Funeral . . . and then life just went on. The world kept turning and there was no such thing as counselling or grief recovery in the early 1990s.
It was nobody’s fault. Everyone around me was trying to cope with their grief in their own way and my little sister, Cliona, had passed away less than a year earlier. People shrugged and told me to get on with things.
As a young Irishman, I didn’t know how to talk about feelings . . . not without alcohol on board at any rate.
Of course, there was no Internet in those days. I didn’t rant on Facebook after returning home from the pub at 4am or put up photos on Instagram of my friends and I drinking ourselves into oblivion, which was the norm for most of my friends at the time.
We didn’t think there was anything unusual about our hard drinking, we were just wild, out for the craic, living all the Irish clich├ęs. …

Justice at last for the 96


How sad – and yet how fitting – that the biggest “newspaper” in Britain decided to leave any mention of the result of the longest-running Inquests in British legal history off its front page when a two year hearing came to an end last week.
For, in its own way, The Sun had done as much damage as any lying South Yorkshire police officer or Tory politician in compounding the grief of so many families who lost loved-ones on the day 96 people went to a football match and never came home.
It really is hard to imagine now how much hurt was caused to the families of the Liverpool FC fans when they read the appalling headline which adorned the entire front page of Britain’s biggest-selling tabloid just five days after they lost their loved-ones in such terrible circumstances.
Under the headline ‘The Truth’, Rupert Murdoch’s tabloid printed lies about the fans and survivors which facilitated a despicable ‘cover-up’, tarnished an entire city, and allowed a…