Saturday, August 13, 2011

Ireland rant

I am so sick of this country's lack of dependability.

Or profesionalism. Or ethic of any kind.

Fadó fadó, I lived in a small village serviced by the 84 an 84A bus routes. It made my teenage life a misery, ruined multiple evenings, messed up my parents' free time, blah blah blah. So institutionalised to the world of the missed bus/late bus/inexplicably early bus/never showing up at all bus/next bus in three and a half hours/last buss leaves at 11.20 pm experience was I, that after I left the small village and moved to a small town, I would tense at the mere sound of a bus approaching, and spiky adrenaline would shoot through my system, ready to run - even when I wasn't going anywhere. It was like that for a good year.

Last night I visited a friend, and wanted to leave earlyish, as we were both falling asleep - she'd been up since 5.30 and I wanted to let her get to bed. There was a bus in 8 minutes, or an hour, so I thought I'd better go get it. The night was a bit wet, but warm and still - we saw a bus go by out the window, but it looked to be  going in the opposite direction (that sounds stupid, but they turn around and go out the same way, so it's hard to tell). I went to the bus stop, and waited, and waited... Taxis passed, quite regularly. I could see my friend watching anxiously from her apartment window. Finally she signalled to me, and came down, saying the buses were always on time, and she thinks we might have missed it, or it wasn't coming. I didn't want to force myself back on her hospitality for an hour so I waited a bit longer, and just got the next taxi. A journey under 15 minutes, but it cost 17€. And I got out early, as I was keeping my eye on the meter. Then I got home to find a message from her on my phone saying the bus had come before she'd even got back into her building.

For fuck's sake! The bus was over 20 minutes late. There was no way to tell when it had left, or what was happening to it. This is why I don't use public transport. It's a fucking trial and the stress involved is not worth it. Usually I just don't drink, but I'd had a stressful week and I wanted to just enjoy myself for a bit. I NEVER get to, because of this sort of thing. Bastards.

THEN, this morning I baked brownies, to send to Germany. Last time I tried this, they never arrived, even though I sent them via registered post. The tracking service basically doesn't work - I queried them when they didn't show up, and heard nothing. A month or two later, I tried again - turns out they'd been sent back to Ireland as the German post system doesn't seem any better than ours. But An Post, in their wisdom, had let them sit there.

Oh, you mailed them in Feb, they were returned on the 22nd of March. It's not July - we'll send them back to you now, they said.

Wait, I thought. They're 6 month old brownies. I don't really... delivered by van the next morning.

What the fuck is wrong with them?

Oh. Right. So this morning, I tried again, baked some PERFECT brownies, ran to the post office before they shut and checked they'd go out today. No. Not til Monday morning. If I could bring them into Dublin, they'd go today. I had to take them back and will do it all again on Monday.



Ms. Moon said...

Sounds just like here.

Jo said...

I'm not living in a rural small town out of the way wild place anymore though.

Rhi@FlourChild said...

Oh I feel your pain. This type of thing happens to me all the time too. I always get caught out when the bus drivers strike, and I don't know about it...
I've never tried posting brownies, but have been the unlucky recipient of a very melted box of Belgian pralines that the posty left on the doorstop in the blaring (Australian) sun!
I hope your week improves. x

matthew said...

I've never really used city buses, if i'm in a city i generally use trains.
I used to use city to city buses when i was in Uni, they were unpleasant but usually on time.
I think i'm going to get a bike soon though, it's 15km, but i hate jammed trains, and it'll be good exercise and there's showers at work.

Jo said...

It's a great idea, Mat. Saves on workout time too!

Mwa said...

At least you all got surprise brownies? No, I suppose that wouldn't be helpful. The picture does say it all...