In which I arrive in Ireland

Diary entry – 6:15am, 30th Aug. Newcastle Airport

Eating a disgusting excuse for food in the terminal Costa.  There are well over a thousand people here rushing about; it cheers me up a bit to know that the holiday season isn’t over, this summer has been long and drab.

I’m so tired I feel sick.

After a lovely evening in my friend’s house in Newcastle, we went to bed in her attic room at the top of the second floor.  The bed was set up beneath a large skylight.  The rain pelted it all night, keeping me from getting into deep sleep – instead I drifted through lucid dreams about Laura and I walking through a storm, and also about Roger the Alien, surprisingly.  We were up at 4.45am, before the sun.  A taxi arrived at 5am to take me to the airport.

When I got here, I had a terrible fright.  I looked at my ticket and read 173, Fri 30th Aug.  Panic hit me like a thunderbolt.  The festival starts on Friday!  I won’t get there til tomorrow.  But I’d checked over and over that today was the 30th.  This was compounded by the faint memory that this was not the day I’d intended to travel, there were no flights on that day.  Surely I’d have booked a day early rather than late?  Wouldn’t I?

I took out my phone and googled the festival: Friday 31st Aug – Sun 2nd Sept.  Was that tomorrow or today?  I tried to retrace my steps over the week.  I looked at the ticket again, taking deep breaths and at last saw what it was: It said FRI 173, 30th Aug – Fri was just some code for the flight.

Proof if it were needed that I shouldn’t be allowed out on my own.

I have impressed myself with my frugal packing.  Usually I bring a spare ball-gown and high heels, momentarily forgetting that I spend 6 days a week in jeans.

Contents of suitcase

Sony DV camera, swathed in towel and university jumper

Nightie.  A nice one, for sleeping in dorms.

2 x hippy dress

Make-up bag

Dry shampoo (though forgot wet shampoo)

Sun cream


MP3 recorder


Phone charger

Changes of underwear and T shirt

Wearing: jeans, T shirt, tie-dye hoodie, leather jacket and sandal trainers.

The flight passed without tragedy.  Whenever I arrive in Ireland, I have the feeling that I have escaped my life – for the past week I have been feeling like my head was about to crack in two from stress, but when I breathed my first breath in Dublin (the air here is warmer and cleaner than back home) I finally thought it could all be worth it.


In which I panic

It’s the eve of my journey.  Tomorrow I will depart a friend’s flat in Newcastle at 5am to begin a long and irksome journey, with the island glinting like paradise on the horizon.

To Do

Collect camera from university – Done.

Pack around the camera (cannot be done until I am sure the camera is under 15kg) – Done.

Change £200 into euros – Done.  And pray it will cost no more than that.

Buy something with credit card then pay it back to build good credit rating.  Unrelated, but important.

Get documentary-maker demeanour right – Not done.  Feel juvenile and scared.

Print boarding pass for flight and hostel. – Not done.  Should probably stop blogging until this is done.

In which I am annoyed by Ryanair

I have spent today with two constant companions: my debit card and a budget Irish airline.  I had virtually no choice, because charged £270, as opposed to Ryanair, where I got them for £57, if you don’t include the £50 they charged for you taking a bag.  Nevertheless, they outrage every moral fibre in my body.  I hear that the tres moderne thing to do with anger is thrash it at the internet, so let’s see what I can do:

Their site keeps deciding I’m a robot because I cannot read their stupid scrambled image words.

They allow you to book under the title Master, but not Miss – is an infant boy more likely to be booking a flight than an unmarried woman?

They have tried to sell me: insurance, a bag (in case Ryanair charge me extra for hand luggage), a car, a hotel and a text telling me when my plane is due.

£50 for a 15kg bag?!  I really hope the camera fits in there…  This will require some strategic packing.

There is no rai…

There is no rail link to Dublin airport.  That is all.