Landed at Dublin airport, two passengers remained on the plane after everyone else had got off. Big Al and I scrabbled around trying to find his passport that had vanished during the course of the flight.
After we got the three air stewardesses involved, one of them found it five rows back–it must have fallen to the floor and slipped back during the flight.
As Big Al mournfully commented, such incidents confirm how one’s military edge quickly evaporates once nestled in civy street, bumbling along losing keys, passports and the like.
I nodded eagerly and sympathetically–though I don’t feel I ever acquired a military edge during my service to lose, unlike Big Al who was a tough infanteer–as that morning at home I’d been lunging around the house in a mild panic trying to find my rail card and train tickets.
Once checked into our hotel opposite Kilmainham Gaol, we trotted back out and found a pub for a pint of Guinness that proved “powerful stuff” in Big Al’s words.
Shaking my head awake the next morning, I’ve learnt it’s one thing having a pint of Guinness in Austin, Texas; quite enough to have one in the city the Irish writer James Joyce called dear dirty Dublin (especially if you have a second Guinness, followed by a Jameson whiskey, after indulging in about four complementary Gin and Tonics while at the British Airways lounge and on the flight a couple of hours earlier).