The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

My Photo
Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

from the heelers job search

Striding towards the doorway of the Wicklow Mountain Rescue Organisation headquarters.
It's a fine wooden chalet style building set on the side of a mountain with lovely gardens all around stretching into blue remembered hills of infinity.
My interview was due to start in five minutes.
Just as I reach the door, a gust of wind tore the folder from under my arm and scattered papers all over the mountainside.
I chased after them as one does.
I was thinking: This looks bad; Desecrating the garden of Ireland; If they're watching from the windows, they not going to like this.
Having retrieved some of the papers, I headed back to the building and was shown upstairs.
It was a nicer building than any Irish civil service facility I've ever encountered, although the interior aura did have that whiff of joylessness which the Office of Public Works considers a proper work place environment for the proles unfortunate enough to get jobs with them.
I was shown to an upstairs conference room which again had a splendid view from the window of bucolic countryside.
I am a bucaholic and was not unaffected by the view.
The interview panel, a man and a woman, sat at a long table.
Steadying myself as I walked past the window. I glanced down onto the gardens.
A somewhat surrealistic sight met my eyes.
A shapely bum was peeping at me from tight jeans. It was in fact being elevated towards me from twenty metres below. It apparently belonged to a girl of lissom form who was attached to it and who was even now stooping over something on the lawn. Her jeans had somehow slid down partially and I was getting an eyeful of what I estimated was about four inches of bum crack.
My delicate mind reeled.
Whatever about throwing away an interview in the first minute, throwing it away before it's begun seemed not to be a good idea.
In quick succession I resisted the urge to comment: "Now there's something you don't often see," and then: "That girl is mooning me," and finally: "What the hell is going on? This is a hell of a way to run a railroad. I mean nature reserve. Oh. Does this mean you're all naturists?"
And so on.
None of these bon mots passed my lips but I also couldn't quite bring myself to look away from the dark side of the sun, I mean bum.
I was wondering how long she'd keep it up.
From the long table, the woman interviewer rose and joined me at the window.
I still hadn't said anything but something in my posture betokened an issue.
"Oh she's photographing frogs," said the woman interviewer matter of factly.
My face was a study.
I was thinking: "I think I see a natterjack in the crevice."
Using all the will power that remained to me, I managed to refrain from doing an accent like the great British roue actor Terry Thomas and exclaiming: "Photographing frogs, eh! I'll say she is. Hubba, hubba. Lucky old frogs. What! What!"
I tore myself away from the window and sat down, hoping my presumption in sitting without invitation hadn't lost me the job already on a technicality.
The interview took on predictable hues.
The woman loved me.
She positively beamed at my every dollop of conversational glutinous blecchhh..
If this was good cop bad cop, she was playing entranced cop.
Unfortunately the Irish Civil Service are wise to my allure and always include a hostile working class male oike on their interview panels just to make sure I don't sidle in on charm alone.
Presently it was the hostile working class oike's turn to ask me a few questions.
"Do you have any opinions as to how we could improve our services here?" he ventured.
This opened a floodgate.
I always have a horse in the race with regard to Irish government departments, their trade unionised staff, their shallow regard for the citizenry, and their casual attriting of our heritage.
 "Actually I have a few opinions on this," I said. "For a start you could be more careful with your signage. If you're going to put up a sign in an ancient castle or monastery or neolithic burial ground, at least make it a good one. Every word should be perfect. Don't let your engineers write the sign. Get a writer or a poet to write it. Unfortunately all you guys think writing is just for losers, so you have these dreadfully worded signs scattered throughout the most precious of our monuments. I mean, just stop. And stop placing metal signage on thousand year old round towers. That's vandalism. Putting an ugly metal sign on a round tower that says: "The Office of Public Works woz Ere." If a yob did it, we'd jail him. Put the sign somewhere discreet. And if all you have to say is "This monument is in the care of the Office Of Public Works," don't say it at all. I mean Duhhhhh. Or don't say it with a metal sign screwed into the brickwork that actually damages an ancient artifact. Say it on a brochure in the visitor's centre for heaven's sake. Or even put a metal sign there. In the visitor's centre no one's going to worry about that. But a metal Office of Public Works sign on the ancient walls of Saint Kevin's basilica is in awful bad taste. Discretion. That's what we need. And good taste. Do they have Degree Courses for that at University College Dublin? And try placing a few discreet wooden benches on the five mile lakeside walks. Not all your visitors are young Jihadis. A lot of your visitors are Irish people. Some are old or can't walk so well. Give em a few benches. Put some thought into making the lakeside walk wheelchair accessible. You don't have to destroy the look of the place. But think about what can be done. And here's a thing. I'm not asking you to be precious about our heritage. True, I don't want your ugly signs on the ancient buildings but I do want people to experience those buildings directly. For crying out loud put an elevator in the round tower. All the way to the top. And open the bloody door. Everybody who sees the tower, wonders why they can't go into it. It would be the crowning experience of Glendalough to be able to experience the view from the top of the tower like the monks did when the Vikings attacked. And if an elevator is too much modernisation, build a replica round tower at the far end of the lake, and stage replica Viking attacks across the fields, or planning permission issues are really paralysing every initiative here and not your own lack of ideas, build it just beside the visitor's centre, and put an elevator in it and let people have some fun. National parks don't have to be boring. Get a few bears or people in bear suits. And ring up Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, I'll do it if you like, he's an old friend of mine, and ask him to send some real monks to the monastic city. It was a monastery for a thousand years. Why not again? Think of it. Saint Kevin's centre of learning, once more alive with the light of faith rather just a trade unionist power brokerage. Or do you civil servants consider everything the Catholic Church builds to be your own personal property?"
The oike's face deepened into something beyond hostility.
"Well we're getting away from the role of a tour guide here," he sniffed. "Can you tell me any of the other facilities we run around Ireland?"
"Er," I said, "Erm, Saint Audoen's church in Dublin."
"Yes. Any more?"
And there our story ends.


Post a Comment

<< Home