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  • Living

You can be king of the castle

Wednesday, 22nd July, 2020 10:59am

Story by David Burke
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You can be king of the castle

ST Patrick's Hall in Dublin Castle, where the Presidents of Ireland are inaugurated. It is the most important ceremonial room in Ireland.

You can be king of the castle

ST Patrick's Hall in Dublin Castle, where the Presidents of Ireland are inaugurated. It is the most important ceremonial room in Ireland.

DO YOU remember that old childhood game? You climbed on a mound of some kind, chanted “I’m the king of the castle …” to which the response was “Get down you dirty rascal” as one of your companions tried to oust you from your perch.

One morning in Dublin a couple of weeks ago I felt like the king of Dublin Castle as I wandered through the state apartments. At 10.30 that morning I was the first visitor of the day, and if one more had come in by the time I left a couple of hours later, that was the height of it.

It was all because of Covid-19 and the post-lockdown torpor that enveloped the country — and the absence of tourists from abroad.

I even got in free gratis, because the very friendly staff were waiting on the ticketing system to get up and running. But I would not have grudged the €8 entry fee for an outstanding experience.

Like Wordsworth’s cloud, I wandered through a succession of rooms that bear witness to our history from the centuries of British dominance to our emergence as an independent nation.

Read the full feature in this week's edition of The Tuam Herald

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