Friday, May 28, 2010

Desperately seeking travel

Today I got up, showered, talked to Ben, and then booked it to the bus station to catch a bus to Derry (pics here). I had wanted to go for a while, since it's a walled city, and had never been breached. I was gleeful on the bus ride there, since it was nearly empty, early morning, and I got to nap. When I arrived, I was not surprised to see how tiny the walled area was, and visited the Tower Museum. After walking the perimeter of the walls and fighting my desire to jump a bus across the border, I went to see the Bogside murals and visit the Museum of Free Derry. That was incredibly depressing. They have a looped soundtrack of the events of Bloody Sunday on, constantly. I can't imagine what that is like for people who work there. The man who sold me my ticket and showed me around lost his younger brother that day. I thought of what Rob said yesterday, which many people have said over and over: this is NOT a post-conflict area, since it is NOT post. I was in a building that displays bloodstained clothing, bullet-ridden clothing, and a nasty letter from loyalists calling a murdered Republican man a cunt. I'm not sure, besides, "never forget," what purpose this serves. I'm not sure, either, why this isn't called a war museum.

I rode home on the stifling upper deck of a full bus, but got a little bit of a nap before walking from the station to the studio, getting inky again, and then going to the Golden Thread for an opening. I have been spoiling myself with bus rides home instead of walking, but I had to get to the store before it closed to get decent groceries to cook myself a nutritious dinner. I'm only now recovering, but know that there's little rest in sight. I'm only about 10 days away from departure, which makes me suddenly want to hit the road every day...the upside of my bus ride home was that I walked right into Belfast's Critical Mass! So I videotaped their launch--cyclists who gather to ride together every last Friday of the month.

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