It happens often – memorable moments you treasure for a lifetime.
I had been in Dublin for a week working as a consultant.
I decided it was time to get outside the city and explore the Irish countryside.
Dalkey was my choice, recommended by several Irish friends.
So off I went in my small mini Morris and after 30 minutes I was there.
Dalkey is a small town with 8,000 people.
It’s a typical small Irish town – quaint, a mixture of the old and the new.
But, as I was to learn later it was much more than quaint.
When I got there I started exploring – strolling through several streets full of wonderful shops and places to see.
One of my stops was a great looking Victorian building with a pub called Finnegan’s.
In I went, ready for a great pint of Guinness. I sat at the bar and this gent poured me Ireland’s favourite brew, a Guinness.
His name was Dan Finnegan.
After the usual to and fro he asked where I was from? I told him Vancouver.
He said he knew of it, having lived in Canada for more than 10 years and that he had returned to Ireland in 1960.
A few years later he bought Finnegan’s, he told me.
That was the extent of our conversation.
I finished my Guinness and left.
A few weeks later I returned to Dalkey and his pub.
Once again he was behind the bar and we chatted.
But this time he was much more chatty.
In fact, at one point, he said, “you missed him, he was here 20 minutes ago.”
I said, “who?”, he replied, “Bono.”
Turns out Bono loves Finnegan’s, it’s his favourite pub.
But Bono isn’t the only mega personality living in Dalkey.
it’s a veritable who’s who of well-known personalities, film director Neil Jordan, author Maeve Binchy, singer Enya, singer Van Morrison, playwright George Bernard Shaw. among others.
Dalkey, often referred to Ireland’s Amalfi Coast, is a cultural power hub, several international arts festivals having been an annual tradition for a long time.
Needless to say I returned to Dalkey often – once I even drove by Bono’s estate.