Return to Limerick


With much anticipation, I am once again planning my trip to University of Limerick in Ireland. I’m better equipped this year if for no other reason than I understand the public busses and train schedules. I recalled the early foibles of my first trip when riding Bus Eireann intimidated me. Here’s a sample of what I posted last year about taking the bus around town:

Now I’ve ridden the bus to most destinations since arriving, some chartered for excursions but primarily it’s been the city bus – Bus Eireann. I’ve learned that routes 308 and 308A are the ones that will take me to and from the University, and that those lines do not go directly to the Limerick Bus Terminal but will get me close. Most of the drivers have been pleasant, even helpful. But the experience has not been without its stumbles. One, while trying to get to the grocery, happened like this:

Me: (to the driver, before paying and boarding) “Does this bus go to Parkway Center?”

Driver: “Which one?”

I had no idea there was more than one Parkway, so I say to him: “I want to go to Dunnes,” which is the main grocery store chain in Ireland. (More about its disgraced owner and his political shenanigans later.)

Driver: “The new Dunnes or the old Dunnes?”

Again, no idea what he’s talking about. I’m wondering to myself, do I sound like I’m from around here? But instead I just hold a blank look.

Now the rest of the passengers are watching and probably eager for the bus to go with or without me. The driver says, “Get on. I’ll show you where to get off for the new Dunnes.”

I pay my 1.70 Euros and sit near the driver. We pass the Parkway with the Dunnes store I thought I was going to go to. Clearly, that must be the Old Dunnes. Then, a few minutes later, we pass what appears to be a very new Dunnes store. I ask: “Was that the new Dunnes?”

Driver: “Oh, sorry. I forgot about you.”

It’s ever so dreary to be old and invisible.

Thankfully, he let me off right away, even though it wasn’t a genuine stop, and I had a short walk to the New Dunnes. {rueful}


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