Saturday 25 February 2017

Parents – you have a yooman rite to bring the kids on holliers

Ian O'Doherty

Ian O'Doherty

This image from video posted on YouTube shows Elliot Rodger
This image from video posted on YouTube shows Elliot Rodger
Yugoslavia: Tito

It was a summer break I'd never forget – if I'd been allowed to go, that is.

I was in secondary school and the old man had stumbled across a random opportunity to visit Yugoslavia for a few weeks. An eternal optimist who had spent his life being disappointed by socialism, he still saw Tito's Yugoslavia as the last European bastion of effective politics. He admired how a country riven by the kind of ethnic and sectarian hatreds that made Norn Iron look like a cake sale could unite together under one flag and he wanted to take the opportunity to see this workers paradise. Just one problem – for the family to go, I'd miss the last week of school.

I wheedled, pleaded begged and cajoled – all to no avail. Damn it, I even read up on the history of the place in an effort to show how interested I was. The Ma pointed out that she wasn't going to take her precious one and only out of school for anything, least of all some trip to a country which, at that stage, was trying to turn itself into a tourist destination to rival Spain.

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