Saturday 10 December 2016

Nineties emigrants are too spoiled for real hardships

Unwitting trailblazer Donal Lynch recounts the drawbacks of emigrating, Skype notwithstanding

Published 26/09/2010 | 05:00

Unlike the thousands of people now emigrating from Ireland every day -- figures released last week showed that numbers leaving are at a 30-year high -- I left more or less by choice. The economy was still in good nick, jobs were plentiful and the other young people I saw leaving town all looked like they were going on weekend city breaks. They had little carry-on bags and return tickets and entitled smiles.

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In fact, generally the only really wild tears you saw at Dublin airport in those years were those of Polish people waving goodbye to a relative who couldn't stand the place any more (and who could blame them? The 'boom' was unbearable in its own way).

In hindsight, it looks like I was acting on some sort of tip off. Two months after I left Ireland, the sh*t hit the fan and we all said goodbye to weekend breaks and our pensions -- possibly forever.

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