Lee 2 Sea - An ambitious plan!

A dedicated greenway from Inniscarra Dam all the way to Crosshaven, with grade separated bi-directional infrastructure all the way? Cork Cycling Campaign, you are a bold one!
Dated Star Wars references aside, the plan brought forward by the intrepid guys & girls over at Cork Cycling Campaign looks seriously impressive. The Lee 2 Sea Greenway (L2S) will start at Inniscarra Dam, and follow the bank of the River Lee through Ballincollig into the City Centre, and then along the old railway line from Marina Park to Mahon and Rochestown, before hugging the shore to Ringaskiddy, before cutting across to Carrigaline and finally to Crosshaven. The plan aims to integrate existing infrastructure, such as the pathways in Ballincollig Regional Park, or along the Mardyke, as much as possible, while at the same time tying all of these landmarks together. It reads very well, and shows the type of ambition and optimism that is all too often missing in this city, where people still seem to be stuc…

The man who kicked the hornet's nest

Okay okay, I admit it. The title is a bit dramatic and clickbaity. However, it’s also kind of fitting for the topic of this particular article, because there’s recently been a major upset of the status quo for some people in Cork. But before I get ahead of myself, let’s take this step by step. As some of you may know, I have neither a car nor a driver’s license, and as such, I’m more or less dependent on public transport for much of my transport needs. That means that I’m effectively dependent on Bus Éireann, and those of my readers who live here in Cork know what that means.
I guess a polite way of describing the type of service that Bus Éireann provide would be “special”. The same way that a young kid who always decapitates animals would be called special, just before he or she shoots up the local middle school. Yes, the metaphors in this article are going to be pretty extreme, get ready for that. Anyway, services on all routes are fundamentally unreliable, and have been for some t…

Coca Cola Zero Bikes Cork - A Chance for Expansion at last?

Looks like bikes are becoming a regular topic on this blog. Following the whole Twitter debacle, which was thankfully resolved quickly and fully, I’m back with another post on that topic. This time, it’s about an old favourite of mine: Coca Cola Zero Bikes in Cork. I’ve written a lot about it, sang its praises when it came online, and did not hold back about its shortcomings and the issues the system is facing, which are legion. One topic I only barely mentioned was the possibility of an extension of the system. It seemed too unlikely, not least because the body behind the system, the National Transport Authority (NTA), stonewalled any suggestions for extension ever since they were first brought up back in 2015. However, things appear to be starting to move. Before I go into detail on that, I’ll just spend the next three paragraphs outlining the state of the system at the moment.
Coca Cola Zero Bikes began trial operations in Cork in December of 2014, before officially opening in ear…

Cork city councillor stonewalling his constituents

Cycling in Cork. That’s a topic I could write on and on and on about. Oh, wait. I have. To claim that it is being treated with disinterest and ignorance by some, and outright hostility and derision by others would be the understatement of the year. And given the fact that I’m writing this in the waning days of 2018, I have a quite a bit of reference material to go by. However, so far, every serious political player here in  Leeside had at least provided lip service to alternative, sustainable transport options. Until Friday evening. Enter Joe Kavanagh, member of Fine Gael and city councillor for the electoral ward of Cork North East. For those of you who don’t know Cork, this effectively covers everything north of the Lee and east of the N20, with a few exceptions around MacCurtain Street. Just a rough outline, but you get the area. Mr. Kavanagh has traditionally not been one of the more progressive councillors in Cork, which in itself isn’t bad. As much as I love progress and as muc…

Thoughts on Christmas

Christmas – Huh! – What is it good for? That is indeed the question, and it’s been on my mind for quite some time now, ever since I missed out on my first Christmas without my parents last year due to the mother of all flus. Well, at least one mother showed up last Christmas anyhow, but I digress. Just as I’ve found myself thinking more and more about the meaning of life, destiny, fate, mortality and all that kind of stuff, my mind has turned increasingly to Christmas, and what it stands for, as the dreaded date in 2018 draws inexorably closer. Originally, this was due to the fact that I wasn’t looking forward to spending it without my parents. But more and more, my thoughts have turned towards what Christmas with them actually meant, rather than the cold hard facts. And looking back, Christmas has, for me personally, always been about coming home.  Since my teenage years, when I was sent out to attend a boarding school in Austria, Christmas has always meant hitting the road when the…

Drone Incidents - Stricter laws won't help!

Please be advised that this post contains strong language throughout!
You know that feeling when you’re already having a really shitty day and you run across a news item, headline or email that really makes your blood boil? Well, that’s how I felt this morning when I saw the headlines about London Gatwick Airport being closed because of a drone over the airfield. Again. Are people really that stupid? Or do they just not care about the damage they might be doing? Whatever the reason, I hope they find the perpetrators and lock them up for a loooong time. These fuckers don’t deserve anything better.

Embed from Getty Images
The drone incident at Gatwick Airport would in all likelihood not have been prevented by stricter laws. Anyone who flies a drone over an airport simply doesn't give a fuck about the law!
For me this whole thing is doubly galling, as I’m not only an aviation enthusiast but a drone operator myself. Those of you who’ve been following my blog for some time will already …

Pond Hopping: From Providence to Cork with Norwegian - Part 5: Returning Home

Monday, 0700h local time. Warwick, Rhode Island. It’s time to leave for home. Well, not quite. My flight doesn’t actually leave until 2050h local time, so I have an entire day to kill here in the US. And what better way to kill time than by shopping? So that’s exactly what my plan will look like for the day. First, however, there’s the little matter of checking out that needs to be settled, after breakfast that is. Getting my suitcase put into storage isn’t really the issue, that is done quickly. However, during the checkout process, the reception agent tells me that my credit card payment hasn’t gone through. Gulp! Not what you want to hear when you’re a transatlantic flight away from your bank! Apparently, it’s just an issue with the card, and another payment with the local card terminal goes off without a hitch. Still, that’s another couple of months taken off my life expectancy.

With that roadblock out of the way, it’s back into the city. Once again on the No. 20 bus, and this ti…