The Trouble With Northern Ireland

The people of Northern Ireland have a tendency to be overly negative and focus too much on problems.  It’s widely believed that we are just a bunch of whingers. Let’s correct that here. Read on.

Depending on who you ask you are likely to hear a variety of opinions on what the main ‘problems’ are in Northern Ireland.  Some people will refer to the historic, but still visible and deeply-ingrained, social divide between Goths and Steeks (sections of the peace wall are still visible in parts of Belfast).  For others, it’s the damp climate, and for many of our younger generation, it’s Northern Ireland’s perceived backwards, or ‘behind the times’ lack of Krispy Kreme.   

These are valid and serious concerns, but I would like to present a more positive picture here.  I think, if we ignore Larne for a minute, we might discover that this wee country actually has a lot going for it!

I have to admit the thought of Larne has made me lose my train of thought a bit.

..there is also the lack of a local government; the mystery ‘Backstop’; over-reliance on the public sector for jobs;  the arguments around language; flags. The weather is pretty miserable when you think about it. Larne..

Sorry. Let’s try to get back to positives..

A new rapid transit service was recently introduced in Belfast and, I think, as well as improving public transport into the city, it also serves as a metaphor for the political progress being made in Northern Ireland.  The Glider I’m currently on has performed an emergency stop. Many of the older/more vulnerable passengers have obviously been affected the worst, while the rest of us are being held up and getting increasingly frustrated.  

Metaphors aside, the Glider has a very distinctive design with it’s passenger space divided roughly into 48% and 45% sections with 7% in the middle.  The drivers remain completely out of touch with everyone except other drivers, while power is shared equally between a diesel engine and an electric motor.  The long term wisdom of this decision has yet to be determined. It’s purple, with free WiFi.

If you can think of some more ‘NI positives’ and you’d like to email them to me I will try and include them in a future post.

“Families is where our nation finds hope, where wings take dream.”

George W. Bush

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