The final whistle in Eden Park last weekend looked almost as welcome to the Hurricanes, who hadn't quite blown the Blues off the park, as the home side who were sending most of the full house home happy.
Jason Holland's house is set in the hills above Rugby League Park where the Wellington Hurricanes go about their daily business. Nowhere is too far from anywhere important in a city that wraps itself around water at the southern tip of New Zealand's north island.
In a previous lifetime we were on one of those weekend coaching courses run by the IRFU every summer. It was in Clongowes, so you had the choice of commuting or staying over. We ticked the second box.
There was nothing special about the penalty kicked by Ronan O'Gara in Brendan Moran's photograph. It was one of the many things that went right for the Munster outhalf on a day when something wrong was hard to find.
On Friday afternoon, IRFU chief executive Philp Browne flipped open his laptop and broadcast from Planet Webinar to a gaggle of hacks spread across the four proud provinces. At the same time in Scotland Mark Dodson, surely the best paid executive in world rugby, was giving the rugby hacks an update.
"We continuously remind athletes that they are responsible for their own medications, what they take, what they do, how they take it, what they check, what evidence they provide that they’ve checked it – that is a constant message. We do work very hard to ensure that."
Very early on in Ireland's tour of New Zealand in 1992, it felt like there had been a mix up. Like the tourists had taken a wrong turn in departures in Heathrow and ended up flying to Auckland instead of anywhere else. It became a refrain on that trip as the massive disparity in standards would be driven home at every turn: why are we down here?
"The case did not revolve around what the other client of the pharmacy may or may not have got or received or been prescribed. The admission was there from the pharmacy: 'We got it wrong.'"
You'll remember the warm feeling that spread recently around the upper echelons of the rugby world. Where once there had been clubs fighting against countries for space in the calendar; where the southern hemisphere had been even more highly agitated than usual about the north's unwillingness to share some cash . . . Then came Covid-19. And suddenly, to a soundtrack of birdsong, all and sundry declared love for each other a yearning to accommodate.
A year ago last week, Munster were beaten by Saracens in the semi-final of the Heineken Champions Cup. When it's your third year running to lose at that stage of the competition the post-match media session is even less attractive than usual. The circumstances of the day weren't great either. Saracens, at the peak of their powers, were even better than they had been when beating Munster in Lansdowne Road two years earlier.
Imagine a scenario where you are a publisher, pitched the following story of a rugby season: a World Cup, the first in Asia, where local weather costs 74 people their lives and blows three games off course, causing wholesale controversy about the wisdom of having the tournament there at that time of year.
You wouldn't need to have clear memories of Celtic's historic European Cup win over Inter Milan in 1967 to have picked up on its context. To have a winning squad, in professional sport, all born within 30 miles of your home base is unthinkable nowadays.
In the space of 24 hours last week the IRFU lobbed two grenades into the public domain - one of them a controlled explosion into which they put a fair bit of thought. The other just got tossed over the wall at Lansdowne Road, going off but not in a crowded space.
When Connacht coach Andy Friend first went to Japan 20 years ago to coach Suntory, he was clear on a strategy of immersion. Partly this would have been driven by his upbringing - his old man, he says, raised him with respect high on his list of values - but also because it was what would work best.
For us, the image of the weekend came from the smart phone of a hack, snapping his colleague - a professional photographer - on bended knee, placing a rugby ball and bottle of hand sanitiser side by side on a chair in the press room of the Principality Stadium. To let the picture tell the story.
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