Monthly Archives: April 2011

Sunny London

I’m trying out something new. I can’t be bothered writing much today, but I know I should, or I’ll get out of the habit. So I’m doing some photo essays.
I was in London over the Easter weekend with the folks (that’s right, my parents came to visit!) and it was delightful.
I didn’t go to any of the art galleries.
I went to one museum (the Victoria & Albert).
I went to the theatre, but, despite the play’s very serious and threatening intentions, it wasn’t particularly interesting, or original… it was just ok, and verging on the melodramatic.
What I did, to my everlasting surprise, was sit in the sun. I sat in the sun in Hampstead Heath on my first day.

It was glorious.

I sat in the sun and watched the people and read my book and lay in the grass, and I haven’t felt so happy and content in a while. Now I understand why all the Irish and English people come to Australia and spend all their days getting burnt in the sun. They’re catching up on years of Vitamin D deprivation.

The next day was just as hot and glorious. I spent it in Regent’s Park and the Queen Mary’s gardens and totally spied on loved-up couples making out on the grass.

No, no, its not sad and creepy and pathetic… its the documentation of life and human existence…

In the gardens, you could hire a paddle boat to ride around a little lake in.

It looked like fun, and even though only couples and families and friends were doing it, I decided I wanted to do it too. No, I HAD to do it too. I approached the boat man hesitantly and asked if I was allowed to hire a boat on my own. He gave me a strange look and said of course I was allowed to hire a boat on my own. Of course you are, Jenny. Stupid question. All he wants is your 7.50 pounds, he doesn’t care about social etiquette or whether or not you look like a sad, lonely Bridge Jones-type girl who will probably end up with too many cats and not Hugh Grant OR Colin Firth.

I was on the lake for an hour, and it was very peaceful. I saw birds. Single fathers shot me smiles as their (3!) children went crazy on the paddle boats. No, thank you.

That afternoon, after an impromptu splurge on a top made of a silk scarf and lace (Seriously, it was pink and white and frilly. I didn’t stand a chance), I met up with the parentals at Hammersmith. We had a traditional British pub meal, cider, chatted and went to bed.

Sunday started with a long breakfast and then we headed into Leicester Square to see what theatre was available. Unfortunately, it being a Sunday, and Easter Sunday, in particular, there was nothing much on. So, we went to the Victoria & Albert Museum instead.But, after 45 minutes of looking at statues, which, to be honest, weren’t filling me with much joy or excitement, we went outside to the garden. We sat in the sun for a bit, and then Dad & Elizabeth decided they wanted to go back inside. I considered it. I thought about it long and hard. I thought about all the decorative art from all over the world, from all different time periods. I thought about all the lovely, rare things to be seen inside in the museum and….
I decided I wanted to sit in the sun.
Which I did. For 2 hours. It was delightful. Children were running around in the fountain in their underpants, despite signs telling them to keep their clothes on. One of the most interesting sights I saw was a Muslim father and mother, the woman with a headscarf on, arguing with one of the museum staff who wanted their stark naked daughter, who was running through the water, to put some clothes on. They clearly thought this was a prudish and over zealous request. Interesting.

Well, that’s it from me. Despite all the sun, I didn’t get burnt. After a tearful farewell to the folks, I’m now home in Bandon and hoping there will be some sun in Ireland as well as England in the next few weeks. Because that would be nice.


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Ducks are Supplied Courtesy of the Local Gun Club



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Bunk Beds

Image: The Unthanks

So, my last post was clearly a function of a little too much to drink the night before and nobody to wake up to the next morning. After lunch with friends and some fresh air, existential angst just becomes existential quibbles. The questions are still there, but no one’s pulling their hair out or gnashing their teeth anymore.
So, Sunday started off at Jake’s Cafe, ‘a Bandon Tradition for over 20 years’, according to the menu. Me, the other Australian au pair, the French au pair and the Swedish au pair all sat down for a lovely lunch, though most of what we wanted was not available to eat. The design scheme (presumably all original) drew criticism from the other girls, but I have a great deal of fondness for the place, probably due to the fact that a ‘slice’ of cheesecake at Jake’s is actually a quarter of a cheesecake. Definite value for money, if not value for thighs.
We then headed out to the ‘Hunter Trials’, something I have never experienced before, but the Australian au pair was enthusiastic, as she is a country girl and did a lot of horse-riding back in Australia. Basically, with the hunting season over, the horse owners run these competitions to keep their horses in shape. You have to take the horses through a short cross-country course and a series of jumps, and you are marked on your ability to do so. Not the most exciting thing to watch, really (the Aussie au pair promised there would be falls, which would still not be my most favourite thing to watch in the world, but it does have a sort of sick fascination to it), but there’s not much else to do in Bandon, especially not on a Sunday, so though 3 of us were unenthusiastic, all 4 of us went.
In the end, it was a lovely afternoon in the half-sun, with the majority of the time spent gossiping, squealing and cackling at an almighty volume, most likely annoying all the farmers and horse riders, or at least intriguing them (we certainly did get a lot of confused looks – no one knew who we were or what we were doing there. It was like the pub all over again, except this time, we weren’t the only women). The best part of it was the views – we were on top of (yet another) green hill, with rolling green hills surrounding us, ever-changing grey-blue-purple clouds billowing across the skies and out to sea. Its hard to feel existential pain when everything around you is so beautiful. ‘Well, I don’t know why its here, it certainly doesn’t make sense, but at least its very pretty and would look good on a postcard.’
That evening I took myself off to the Cork School of Music to see a band called The Unthanks. This was a band I had wanted to see at the Sydney Festival, but managed to miss due to the huge rush of things that needed to be done before heading off. They were certainly worth the wait, as was their support act, ‘The Trembling Bells’. Both bands take influences from a wide variety of places, including minstrel music, folk music, rock, free jazz, glam rock etc. as well as having fantastic accents (Geordie and Glaswegian respectively). It makes for a very intriguing sound, not like other things I’ve heard. Check them out (both of them), because I can’t describe them well enough. All I’ll say is that any band that combines violins, a trumpet and clog dancing is a good one in my book. The problem with me seeing bands live, however, is that I inevitably develop crushes on most… well, lets be honest, all of the band members. This is compounded by the fact that I insist on sitting in the front row, spending the whole gig convincing myself that said band members keep looking at me during their songs, because they are so blown away by my beauty and/or dress sense and/or enthusiasm for the music and/or completely obvious deep and totally unique connection to and/or understanding of the music. This is despite the fact that I know, deep in my heart of hearts, that because of the stage lighting, they cannot see a single person in the audience (let alone their dress sense and deep and unique connection to the music) and, besides, most of the time they’ve got their eyes closed, and furthermore, they’re probably shacked up with/married to the gorgeous singer with the wavy, long hair, the good skin and oh-so-soulful eyes. Of course, in spite of this knowledge, I then convince myself I HAVE to go and talk to the band afterwards, just in case they need the opportunity to pledge their undying love for me (all of them, or, at least, any of them….). When that doesn’t happen, I sign up to their mailing list, in the hope that they’re just too shy and will put a mark next to my name on the mailing list and send me an email declaring their undying love and inviting me on tour with them in a few days time. I must think my life is actually being written by a B-grade Hollywood rom-com screenwriter. I mean, honestly.
Of course, what actually happens is I walk up to the band with no clear idea of what to say in my head, gush ‘thank you’ a lot and ‘it was beautiful’ and ‘ I really enjoyed it’, until we’re all of us embarrassed and uncertain where to look. Then, in a misguided attempt to continue the conversation, I ask some dumb questions about the tour, which they answer politely, whilst I turn bright red, start saying ‘thank you’ and ‘it was beautiful’ again and then walk backwards into another audience member, who, in my attempt to apologise to, I end up hitting again. And then I knock over their companion. Whilst the band looks on and mentally crosses me off their mailing list. Basically, I have never been, and will never be, able to ‘play it cool’.
Well, that’s all very nice and amusing and self-deprecating, Jenny, I hear you say, but none of it has to do with bunk beds, which is the title of your post, and was the reason I clicked on it to begin with. So, on a completely different topic, because I’m finding it harder and harder to write posts about a single topic or idea, last week, my eldest charge’s bunk beds finally arrived. I have never seen such enthusiasm and excitement about something before. Honestly, drought-stricken farmers never anticipated the rain as much as these bunk beds have been anticipated by my eldest charge. I was first informed about the bunk beds’ imminent arrival when I got here in February. Since then, I’ve seen pictures of them on the internet. I’ve heard descriptions of them. I’ve been filled in on who is going to be allowed to sleep first in them and when this will occur. And, finally, finally, last week, they arrived.
The extra exciting thing about these bunk beds is that the bottom bed is a double bed, enabling THREE (yes, you read correctly, THREE) people to sleep in the same room, in the same bunk bed AT THE SAME TIME. That’s right, people. I’m not even joking. Its a disassembled slumber party wrapped in plastic and packed with styrofoam into an IKEA box. The bunk beds were also accompanied by a specially bought new linen set and decorative pillows (I don’t want to brag, but my skills at setting up these pillows and sheets have been highly praised. In fact, it has been suggested that I could get a job in a hotel. I may get this in writing, just in case I ever decided to pursue such a career path).
So, it was a three day long assembly process after the bunk beds finally arrived. However, at long last, Thursday night a week ago, they were set up and ready to go. I was informed that I was allowed to sleep in the bottom bed, was nigh on expected to sleep in the bottom bed on Thursday night. However, coming home late and tired from my course, I forgot to do so. I went to breakfast expecting fire and brimstone, but nothing was said. Nor was anything said the next day, or the next or the next. So, yesterday I casually mentioned that I had never gotten to sleep in the new bed. I was enthusiastically invited to sleep in the bed again last night, which I accepted on the proviso that I was allowed to stay up until 11:30pm as usual and sneak into bed then (instead of going to bed at 9pm with my bunk bed companion).
Now, as much as I have been making jokes at the enthusiasm of my charge in regards to the bunk beds, I have to say, that it was an incredibly comfortable bed, and a really lovely feeling, sharing the room with her. The famous Murray dog was also sleeping on the bottom bed with me, which cheered me no end. In the morning, I was woken by the youngest girl as well as her mum, because we all slept in. Another invitation to share the bunk beds was offered for this evening, which I have accepted. Obviously its not something I can or should do every night, but it actually makes a lovely change. And, it certainly stops me from falling asleep on the couch in front of the TV, or just sitting in a TV-addled haze for the last few hours of the night before stumbling into my bedrooom.
That’s probably enough for now. I should start getting ready to go to bed 🙂

Image: See? See? See how exciting they are???

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What am I doing here again?

Oh, hey, how you doing? Yeah, haven’t written in a while. Sorry ’bout that. No, no, its not that I haven’t wanted to write, its not that I’m not missing you, its just that, well, everything seems all over the place a bit at the moment, and I couldn’t identify an amusing theme with which to tie together all my threads of thought.
I had wanted to write a very deep and meaningful post about last Sunday, when the family took me to Gougane Barre, a forest area in West Cork, which also happens to be the source of the River Lee (the river that runs through Cork city) and where St. Finbarr (the patron saint of Cork) had a monastery set up (in very forward-thinking way, he also set up a little church, on a tiny island in the middle of a beautiful lake, surrounded by mountains, knowing how the competitive brides of the future would be falling over themselves to get married in a totally unique, secluded and MUCH MORE BEAUTIFUL PLACE THAN EVERYBODY ELSE’S WEDDING PLACE – the church has up to 3 weddings a day now its that gorgeous). I thought this would be a very good post, very deep and significant, you know, patron saint of Cork, source of the River Lee, all sorts of great metaphors and things to be had there. Me, wandering around, feeling significant and holy, admiring the trees, and attempting to stop the youngest girl from throwing herself into the River Lee in search of better pebbles, that sort of thing.
I was also going to write about the bizarre ‘laughing workshop’ I did yesterday in Cork, and tie it in with some of the other bizarre workshops I’ve been doing and haven’t written about yet. My laughing workshop was based around the idea that children laugh 300 times a day (as I have experienced whilst working as an au pair) whereas adults laugh only 17 times a day, but that there are all sorts of medical benefits (physical and emotional) to laughter. The ad said we were going to be doing ‘laughter yoga’ and ‘laughter meditation’ as well as be working with a stand-up comedian, all of which sounded very interesting. However, it turned out to be an elderly Dutch man who had been living in Cork for 12 years, just doing strange exercises with us that were designed to make us laugh. Except before every exercise he would say, ‘Now, don’t laugh! Of course, you will laugh! But don’t do it!’ Which was all very confusing. It was made worse by the Bosnian photographer who kept saying things that were way too close to the bone and the truth of a situation, and then when the group lapsed into an uncomfortable silence, he would look at everyone and he would demand, ‘I’m making a joke, why aren’t you laughing??’ and we would all laugh awkwardly. The worst was at the end of the day when a photographer came from the paper and we had to stand around and have our photos taken, and we had to force laughter for 45 minutes. I will tell you that, there may be medical benefits to real laughter, but forced laughter just gives you a headache, makes you feel like you have a fever, that you’ve been hyperventilating and/or are about to throw up. I ended up running out of the room in a haze, to splash my face with water before I fainted. There were some lovely people there, as well as some very interesting people – a lot of whom seemed to have been drawn to Ireland for the same sort of reason as me (that is, we had no bloody clue why we decided to come, but somehow we had ended up here). I’ve actually met a lot of people like that in Ireland. I don’t know if Ireland attracts those sorts of people, especially now its in recession, or if its just a symptom of the crazy workshops and places I’ve been heading out to. Still, it also seems a common feeling amongst some of the au pairs.
I was also going to dedicate an entire post to men. Or, more properly, the lack of men. And, I don’t mean, oh woe is me, there are no cute boys around the kiss (although that is part of it), but just the fact that, at the moment, in my life, there seems to be NO men. All the au pairs I’m hanging out with are girls, my course is full of girls, I’m looking after girls. Obviously I still see men around, but they kind of exist on the periphery of my life at the moment. They’re sort of hazy and blurry around the edges. Most of the time, the only place I see them is in the pubs in Bandon, and the way they react, you would think I was a different species. When the other au pairs and I walk in, the pub men will all stop what they are doing, turn to us and stare. Its like they’ve never seen women before. Or, never seen women in a pub before. Or, maybe, they’ve never seen that many women in a pub before. Whatever it is, its very strange and unnerving. Generally everyone loosens up and starts talking to you and joking with you, but its a strange first few minutes. Last night we met a very funny Irishman, Ray, who kept forgetting all our names, so he christened me Alf Stewart, the other Aussie girl, Don Fisher, and the other girls according to their countries. Of course, he told us he was also heading to Australia on May 5th, for a job in Brisbane. His mate was heading to Perth for a job in September.
And, well, that’s what I’m going to write about now. Because the only thing that seems to be a common thread for me at the moment, is what on earth am I doing here? I don’t mean it in a desperate, oh-god-why, kind of way, because, of course, I am having fun and its a beautiful country and all, but, I’m just so confused. Everyone is leaving. Its like I jumped on the sinking ship just as everyone got into the lifeboats and they’re all waving me good bye as I sink into the water. They think 50, 000 people will leave the country by the end of the year. There’s a theater piece going on in Dublin at the moment called ‘I am a Home Bird (its very hard)’, which, apart from being a beautiful title for a play, really sums up what its like being a person of my age here in Ireland. The strangest thing is, how few young people are here. There are a lot of university students, but once they graduate, not many are able to hang around. I keep thinking, wow, what would happen if everyone just left? Maybe everyone in Ireland should just abandon ship. Just go somewhere else and then what would Germany do about the bailout? Can you imagine? An island with all its infrastructure, but entirely deserted? The other image I have is of all the young people going and the island just being populated by people over the age of 70, who don’t want to leave or can’t see the point. The island of the elderly. And, then, I just keep coming back to my question, why am I here, why, why, why am I here?
I could throw out all sorts of feel-good, la-di-da answers about broadening my horizons and getting life experience and all that sort of crap, but I still get this sense of, well, what’s the purpose of broadening my horizons, what’s the purpose of all this ‘so-called’ life experience? What will I do with it? Can I put it on my CV? Life experience: tick. Can I use it to pick up men? Hey, how you doing, I have ‘life experience’. And, more to the point, why, why, why, did I choose Ireland? Why am I broadening my horizons here? Most people are so sad. Why am I broadening my horizons by being stuck inside a house as an au pair all day? It verges on the boring. I read an article about a woman with post-natal depression yesterday and I could, terrifyingly, identify with a great deal of what she was talking about.
I sound really angry, I sound sort of depressed. I may be a little of both, but please don’t worry. I am having fun as well, its just when I stop and think about what I’m doing, I suddenly start to get confused and worry. What’s that quote, ‘the unexamined life is not worth living?’ Sometimes, I would like to say, bullcrap to that. The unexamined life is just fine, and the life that isn’t compared to other people’s lives is also pretty good, and the life that contains no self-help books about reaching your full potential is also not bad.
Well, that’s probably enough existential angst for the moment. I applaud you if you got this far, and hope you’re not on a bit of a downer now. I welcome your thoughts on the purpose of my journey if any are forthcoming, because I am lost in the Irish wilderness.

Image: Existential angst in the Irish wilderness

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I Met Some Interesting People.

Image: Not one of the men I met on my travels. Unfortunately.

So I haven’t written in a while, but that’s because I’ve been pretty busy, so you should be happy for me. Be happy for me, alright? Thanks. In particular, I’ve been meeting with some great people. And also a few special ones.
It all started yesterday morning on the bus to Cork. When I was getting off the bus, I noticed a man who I have seen before, and has previously intrigued me. Its strange – he seems to be always be on my bus, no matter what time I get on. Its not like I’m always getting them 7:30 bus or something, I take the 11am bus and he’s there, I take the 5pm bus and he’s there. But he gets on before me, so he can’t be stalking me. Maybe I’m stalking him and I just don’t realise it. Anyway, he either looks like an aging famous rocker in an artistically shabby designer fur jacket, or a mountain man who has killed and skinned his own rabbits and then sewed them together with the ligaments of a passing deer. He has incredibly tanned skin, with wrinkles as deep as mountain ravines, crazy hair, long, thin, artistic-looking fingers, and is always sitting and reading pages and pages of tightly written curvy words. I tend to spend most of the bus ride trying to stare at him surreptitiously, and yesterday I actually spoke to him. Sure all it was to say ‘thanks so much’, because he let me out before him, but I think its the start of a great friendship. By the end of the year, I may have found out what rock band he used to play in.
After getting off the bus, I walked into the city. Whilst waiting for the lights to change, I was bent over my iPod, which made the pom-poms on the ends of my hat hang away from my body a little. As I was choosing the ‘shuffle’ option, a wrinkled hand stretched out and squeezed one of my pom-poms. I looked up to find a 70 year old man with a red face and orange hair leering down at me. When he saw the look of shock on my face, he muttered, ‘Sorry’, grinned and then ran down the street. It was truly bizarre. I’m not yet sure if he meant to squeeze the pom-pom, knowing it was sleazy, or if it was a total impulse, and he reached and grabbed one without thinking about and then was hugely embarrassed when he realised what he had done (hence the running away).
The reason I went into Cork yesterday was to meet up with a girl I had been in contact with through the internet. There is this thing called ‘Script Frenzy’, which I am attempting this year (see link: ). The challenge is to write a 100 page script in the month of April, and the website has forums, which allow you to talk to other people in your area who are attempting to do so as well. So, I had been messaging a fellow Cork girl and we had decided to have a writing ‘meet-up’ in town yesterday, it being the second day of the challenge. I found the cafe pretty easily, and, even though we hadn’t seen any photos of each other or said, ‘I’ll be the girl with the pom-poms on my hat and the trail of old men sneakily following behind’ or anything like that, when I walked in I recognised her immediately: a bespectacled girl sitting in the corner, with a huge laptop and a slightly expectant look on her face. She was very sweet, and we chatted easily about our scripts, which was great. As the afternoon wore on, though, she told me a variety of interesting things about herself, like the medieval fantasy novel she was writing, the fact that she had once paid 500 euro for a Star Trek convention in Germany, the internet role-play games that she was involved in, and that she had given up acting as an 18 year old to continue her medieval fighting lessons. I was torn between the urge to judge her damningly and also to ask more questions and find out more about this parallel medieval/fantasty/sci-fi universe she seemed to be living in that I have had so very little contact with. In the end, it didn’t seem like we had much in common apart from our writing, but it was certainly nice to get out of the house and chat to someone of my own age.
On the way back to the bus stop, I actually did stalk a couple, because they kind of looked like Jeremy Irons and Sinead Cusack, and anybody who has watched ‘North & South’ with me will know that my obsession with Richard Armitage is only slightly greater than my obsession with Sinead Cusack, and her hilariously fantastic Yorkshire accent (‘Ma sun Mrs. Hayle…’ Translation: ‘My son, Mrs. Hale….’), which I attempt to mimic for the entirety of the movie. Its actually not all that fun to watch ‘North & South’ with me, if you want to follow the storyline, or hear the dialogue. Anyway, there was this couple that kind of looked like craggy versions of Jeremy and Sinead, like, not the made-up-Hollywood versions, but the, ‘we’re just popping down the shops and can’t be bothered looking glamorous’ versions. And, I do know from a very emotional ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ episode that they live somewhere in South-West Ireland, so it wouldn’t be completely out of the realm of possibility that they were out for a day’s shopping in Cork. So, I stalked them going into Marks and Spencers. After observing them from various angles, however, as well as their interaction with the locals and, the fact that they were going into Marks and Spencers (which just seemed too ordinary for fabulous movie stars – surely they don’t have to buy ordinary things like food and drink, surely they just exist on their own fabulousness and only go to the store to buy diamond-encrusted necklaces for their pet swans or something… I mean, that’s the impression I get from tabloid magazines…), I decided it was most likely not them. However, by this point, I had just missed my bus home, and despite a most-movie-like run down the street after it, I had to return to the bus stop and wait for the next one. Thanks a lot, not-Jeremy Irons and not-Sinead Cusack.
So, in the end, I took a chance on a different bus route home, which went a very bumpy and picturesque, and probably extra long route. I think the bus driver knew I was getting on the wrong bus as well, because he gave me an extra big grin when he checked my ticket and thanked me. ‘Ha ha,’ he thought, ‘Another stupid tourist. I’m going to enjoy this.’ However, despite his evil intentions, I am grateful to him for not telling me, as I would have felt obliged to get off the bus if he had said anything, and I kind of wanted to go a different way home and see a bit of the countryside. Accidentally caught buses can provide all sorts of fun and interest, if the bus drivers would not insist on correcting every confused commuter that got on board and telling them the right bus to wait for (I’m reminded of the time in Year 8 or 9 when Nicole Fuller and I got on the 226 to get to my house at the top of Grandview Rd in Newcastle when we had missed the 363 and the 232 and were facing a one hour wait, and we saw the 226 and it said it was going past the John Hunter Hospital and Charlestown and we thought, ‘Well, where else could it go possibly go but past Grandview Rd?’ the answer of course being, ‘everywhere else in Newcastle’. But it was possibly one of the funniest and most exciting bus journeys I have ever had, as we spent most of the ride in slightly hysterical giggles, attempting to guess where the bus would next go, the light steadily getting darker, running into our friend Joel Pietersie’s dad, because, by this time, it was well past 5pm, and then giving us weeks of hilarious stories to tell our friends and years of personal jokes about the 226 and mock-angry, devastatingly funny, shakes of the fists in the air whenever we saw it go past). When I finally got home to Bandon, I thanked the bus driver extra politely, which he didn’t seem to like much. He nodded his head and frowned over the top of his cigarette.
Anyway, I then got dressed and headed out to meet up with a bunch of au pairs from the Bandon area at one of the local pubs.This turned out to be one of the best nights I have had so far. There was me, another Aussie au pair who I met last week, a Swedish au pair, a French one, a Spanish one and an Austrian one (kind of sounds like that start of a joke, really, or some sort of international au pair convention). There was much cackling, discussion of the great accessories people were wearing (such a woman moment), derision of the lack of talent amongst Irish men, and other important issues. I particularly liked the French girl, who had just had a long passage of Oscar Wilde tattooed on to her forearm. She told me she used to be normal until she met me, which I took to be a compliment. She was trying to convince me to get my own tattoo, which I’m still considering…
Anyway, we all have a plan to go out in Cork in two weeks time, which I am very much looking forward to, even though its the weekend my parents will be in Cork, and I don’t know how I’m going to juggle both. Perhaps Dad and Elizabeth would like to go out clubbing with me? Well, now, it was only a suggestion…
That evening we also met the Bananas in Pyjamas, who were for some reason visiting Bandon and who were also, interestingly enough, out for a drink at 9pm on a Saturday night, instead, of say, in a shopping centre, talking to kids at 9am on a Sunday morning (and who also were a lot dirtier than on TV – one grabbed the Spanish au pair’s arse), a very sweet 21 year old, who looked 12, and a very short Irish man who attempted to pick up most of our group one by one, a feat which, most surprisingly, failed on each of us, one after the other.
Well, that’s all the news for today, I’m a bit tuckered out after my ‘big night on the town,’ and haven’t got the energy to tie this all together. Instead I’ll let it peter out and turn in.

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