Friday 9 December 2016

Old places and faces take me on a trip down memory lane

Published 20/01/2014 | 02:30

Queen Elizabeth meets fishmonger Pat O'Connell at his stall in the English Market in 2011
Queen Elizabeth meets fishmonger Pat O'Connell at his stall in the English Market in 2011

'How's herself?" I asked Pat O'Connell. "Granny, is it? Oh she's grand. In top form. She was over to stay with us before the Christmas for the few days. She loves coming over. We did up her own room for her and it's very nice. She was delighted with it."

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Pat is a showman who performs six days a week behind the counter of his fish shop in the English Market in the middle of Cork city.

I was in the city by accident on Friday last and the shop was buzzing. There must have been a hundred different varieties of fish on view. We settled for hake fillets and a dozen scallops. I've been coming here since I was in UCC, a long time ago, back when I thought some fine day I would surely become the leader of the free world and now look at me. I'm the leader of a small pub and only then when the mother takes to the bed for about two hours every six months.

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