Yesterday in Dublin: the theatre and the march.

Yesterday, Saturday, two friends and myself decided we would go to Dublin to the Gate production of “A Month in the Country”. It was not our brightest idea, considering we were clashing with the rugby match and the ‘right to water” march.
The train from Limerick Junction to Dublin was packed, and I had to make do with standing on the corridor between carriages. There were about half a dozen Cork men around where I stood, and I could clearly hear their conversation all the way to Dublin. They were going to the march. In the course of an hour and a half they didn’t have anything positive to say about anything or anybody. They gave out constantly about the government, politicians generally, the bankers, and an amorphous group of people who were creaming it off, and leaving themselves in a state of destitution. I heard about all the taxes they had to pay, and the general hardship of their lives. The negativity was overwhelming. The only solution they could see was “revolution”, and one of them expressed eagerness for the day to come when all the present system would be overthrown, and replaced by ‘someone’ who would govern the country properly. He even assured all of us within earshot that he would be willing to take up arms and join the revolution. I was tempted on a few occasions to interject, but decided that it would be wiser to keep my mouth shut. None of them looked remotely ‘destitute’ to me, as they travelled to Dublin on their free pass, and clearly had enough money for food and drink while they were there.
In Dublin, after lunch in the Aisling, I walked up the quays and O’Connell St, to the Gate theatre. There were a good few people heading for the city centre. There was a crowd gathering at Heuston station, but not many, even though they were making a good bit of noise. It was two o’clock when I walked up O’Connell St. There was a small enough gathering around the stage, one thousand people at most. When I got to the theatre a group of Sinn Fein people from Cabra, about fifty, were marching down. They shouted: “From the Rivers to the Sea, Irish Water should be Free”, and some abuse of Enda Kenny. (From the small bit I know about climate change, it is clear that for the next generation water will be anything but free, as clean water becomes a very scare commodity worldwide!)
I looked out during the interval of the play; it was raining heavily, and people were scattering for shelter. The protest had come to an abrupt end.
In the evening I read some pieces about the “tens of thousands” who attended, and what was said. A sixteen year old was given the microphone to tell us that “everyone knows this government is crap”, followed by Brendan Ogle, who said that young person knew more about the country “than the whole fucking cabinet”.
All in all, it was not a day to lift the spirits. And, incidentally, I was disappointed with the play — too much ‘slapdash’ and playing for laughs in my estimation! Happily there was plenty of room in the six o’clock return train. I suspect the marchers were having a few pints!