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Irish language

Crowded beach or solitude - what is your favourite type of holiday?

BENIDORM: This is the image that springs to mind when we think of Benidorm but people tell me that, away from the madding crowds, the area is really beautiful 
Robert McMIllen

FÁILTE ROMHAIBH ar ais, yes, it’s welcome back to those hazy, crazy, lazy day of summer in the company of the Bluffer’s Guide to Irish.

Wel, it’s the Bluffer’s annual jump into the world of holidays so long-term devotees might know a lot of these phrases already so, hey, this is for all you new kids on the block.

Of course, the Irish for holidays is laetha saoire, literally free days, when we spend some time away from home, be it in a carabhán i mBaile na Mianadóirí - a caravan in Minerstown or in an óstán cúig réalt - a five star hotel in Marbella.

Different strokes for different folks and it depends too on whether you have children or if you are elderly.

At Málaga airport last Friday, the Bluffer saw a frail-looking woman whose daughters had taken her on holiday for her 90th birthday!

Bhí am ar dóigh aici - she had a great time, she said.

So, if you could design a holiday, what would it be like?

Again, ní lia duine ná tuairim - different strokes for different folks. 

Some people like to go off ar a gconlán féin - on their own.

Chuaigh mé ar mo chonlán féin go Meiriceá - I went off my own bat to America, for example. 

When abroad, you see a lot of single travellers and it used to be young backpackers but I think we’re beginning to see older travellers, men and women, going solo.

There is great saoirse - freedom in deciding where you’re going, what you going to eat, how long to stay etc, however, there is nothing better than being in cuideachta mhaith - good company when you are in, say Benidorm, and tá an ghrian ag dul faoi - the sun is setting, you’re a little bit tipsy and Camila Cabello has just started singing Havana.

Or for the more óg agus beoga - young and lively amongst you, there is always the pre-swall, the disco, manglaim - cocktails that taste of Lux soap, twerking with Sharon from Shrewsbury ending up with a headache the size of Larne the morning after.

This is not the Bluffer’s cup of sangria. He prefers the camaraderie of sharing pints with old friends and he’s also into his history, you see.

So next month, it’s off to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne to sample some Geordie hospitality, drink like a local and enjoy what the tourist website calls “world-class culture, vibrant night-life, award-winning dining, inspiring heritage, fantastic shopping and acclaimed architecture.”

Way hey, man, although being spoken to in fluent Geordie in a hotel might remind him too much of Alan Partridge!

No, the Bluffer will be trying to find out more about Flann Fína mac Ossu who died in 704 or 705.

Flann, born to a Northumbrian king and a banprhionsa Éireannach - an Irish princess was also known as Aldfrith. He was king of Northumbria from 685 until his death and bhí clú an léinn air - he was famed for his learning.

Then, the Bluffer and his band of brothers are heading to Hadrian’s Wall to see what all the fuss is about and then, the final destination will be Edinburgh, to discover its ancient history and to quaff some of the black stuff it imports from St James Gate in Dublin.

So what is your kind of holiday, dear reader?

Do let me know at the email address above.


laetha saoire (layha seera) - free days, holidays

carabhán i mBaile na Mianadóirí (caravan i mala ne meeanadoree) - a caravan in Minerstown

óstán cúig réalt (awstaan cooig raylt) - a five star hotel

Bhí am ar dóigh aici (vee am er doee ackee) - she had a great time

ní lia duine ná tuairim (nee leea dinya naa toorim) - different strokes for different folks

ar a gconlán féin (er a gonlaan hane) - on their own

chuaigh mé ar mo chonlán féin go Meiriceá (khooee may ar maw khunlaan hane gaw merika) - I went off my own bat to America

saoirse (seersha) - freedom 

cuideachta mhaith (cudgeakhta why) - good company 

tá an ghrian ag dul faoi (taa un yreean ag gul fwee) - the sun is setting

óg agus beoga (awg agus byawga) - young and lively 

manglaim (manglam) - cocktails

banprhionsa Éireannach banfrinsa ayranakh) - an Irish princess 

bhí clú an léinn air (vee clu un layin er) - he was famed for his learning

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