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11:57am on Wednesday, 9th March, 2011:

Laying Over


So, here I am at Dublin airport.

The reason I'm here, rather than on a plane to Boston, is that my plane to Boston leaves from here. Although there are plenty of direct flights from Heathrow to Boston, it's a lot less expensive to fly there on Aer Lingus via Dublin, so that's what I'm doing.

Ireland is currently enduring a bout of economic penury that is set to last for years, but from an airport lounge it's hard to see what the effects are. The place is bright and clean shiny, all the shops are over-priced, and they have more people on immigration and security duty than they need. It's not exactly teeming with passengers, though, despite the fact that there are 88 flights listed on the boards between 10:20am and 7pm. I had mused that the reason the Boston flight might be cheap is through economies of scale: it would be packed with young people emigrating to the USA to escape a life of high taxes in a shrunken economy. Perhaps not entirely unsurprisingly, that doesn't seem to be the case, though. Maybe the policy of teaching Gaelic in schools has created a generation who don't want to leave because then they'd have wasted all that schooling learning a language no-one speaks anywhere else?

I've only been to Ireland once before, for a MUDmeet. I remember a sign at the airport that, paraphrased, said: "Come to Ireland and see the biggest harp in Ireland". I think they've probably taken it down.

Wow, that man sitting opposite me has a magnificently obvious toupée.

Given that it's 11:55am, 6 of those 88 flights are already supposed to have left.

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Copyright © 2011 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).