Holiday Memories Dublin 1958 - a Memory of Dublin.

For a 9 year old boy from Edinburgh the travel arrangements for our family holiday to Dublin in 1958 were quite an adventure.
Embarkation on the steamer at the Broomielaw in Glasgow and our billet turned out to be in the hold along with up to a 100 or so others. In view of this the tension between my parents on the voyage over the Irish Sea was palpable but Dad, being the stoical, ex-Military type he was, would quip "Time to visit the Engine Room, son!", giving Mum time to cool her ire.
Our B&B accommodation was provided by a Mrs Cagney whose house was quite near Phoenix Park.
Midway through our stay in Dublin I remember being asked if I would like to stay with Mrs Cagney and her son for a few days while Mum and Dad went off to 'visit'.
It was only in later years when I was in my 20s I realised this 'visit' had in fact been an attempt by my mother to research her roots in the SW of the Republic - Mary Katherine Deery - but very little of what was found was to be heard by my ears. I can only guess at some of the horrors which were unearthed!
On a lighter note some of the minutiae of that holiday still remain. The train ride down to Dun Laoghaire on an elctric train, Dad buying an Agfa camera for himself and a first watch for me from Clerys, Mum buying up all the tins of John West salmon she could cram into her suitcase and cowering in case we were sussed at the customs!
It always seemed to be raining that summer and I remember falling into a water feature at the Japanese Gardens and Mum exclaiming that "It's only water", as if somehow that made everything OK.
Our last evening in Dublin I remember was a swanky affair, a slap up dinner in O'Connell Street and later watching 'Carve Her Name with Pride' at a nearby cinema, then a taxi back to the B&B.
I always look back fondly to that holiday and now that I have an appreciation of what my maternal forebears must have endured in 19th century Ireland I thank providence that some of them got out when they did so that I may have a life.
I am hoping to visit Dublin again soon. At least they have a tram system up and running. Edinburgh's is 3 years late at the moment and will probably cost twice the original estimate but that's a story for another time.


A memory shared by James Mc Ewan on Aug 21st, 2009.
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