Sunday 18 November 2018

Fergal Keane: 'Precious prize of peace that must be saved'

On the road from Belfast to Dublin in 1989, something lifted inside when you passed the Border
On the road from Belfast to Dublin in 1989, something lifted inside when you passed the Border

Fergal Keane

The Border, as I first saw it, hardly existed at all. I was packed into a bus heading north surrounded by teenage girls from St Paul's School in Greenhills, Dublin. My mother taught English there and on this occasion sought to advance her pupils' understanding of the island on which they lived.

It was the early spring of 1968 or thereabouts, before the first civil rights marches and the onset of disaster. I was seven years old and an easy mark for giggling girls looking for a boy to tease.

I knew nothing of the politics of the time. I cannot remember the North being talked about at home before the Troubles began.

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