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  • Michael Noctor

bohemian vagabond or just a traveller

Last night I turned the corner onto my road and saw the spire of the church that’s beside my building and for a moment a feeling of calm descended on me, a feeling that comes with being close, very close, to home. Here’s the thing, I’ve had several homes in the last eight years but last night was the first time I had that feeling. I slept in my Honda for approximately eight hundred and forty nights and now I live in a beautiful apartment in Portobello and I’m not just saying this because I live there – Portobello is a wonderful place to live. If I ever had to live in my Honda again, I’d park it up in Portobello.


living in my Honda


Since 2011 I have lived in Tallaght (1 year), Drogheda (2 years), Athboy, Co. Meath (18 months), Malaga (7 months), in my Honda in Tallaght (1 year), Malaga, again (7 months – with a one month detour to Melbourne), Galway (4 months), in my Honda in Tallaght (one year), in my sister’s recuperating from a near death experience (3 months), Galway – during first lockdown – four months, in a shared apartment from Peter McVerry Trust Homeless Services ( 3 long, very long months) and now I am four months in my beautiful apartment in Portobello. Hardly a setting for a bohemian vagabond or just a traveller.


I could write twenty books on that last paragraph … LOL.


I live a five-minute ramble to the house where Robert Emmet was arrested. I live across the road from 58 South Circular Road, a house Kevin Barry lived in.


Emmet, a pitiful figure.


There is something tragic (and downright stupid) about Robert Emmet’s story. If you ramble through Steven’s Green – when those ugly gulls are plentiful – I guarantee you, you will see a big ugly gull perched on Robert’s head. There’s a bust of James Joyce’s head yards away, but I’ve never seen a gull perched on that. That probably doesn’t mean much but, imho, the pathetic nature of R.E. being caught and executed fits in with a big bird sitting – and probably shitting – on his head.


My apartment is an eleven-minute walk from that statue. See what I mean about living in Portobello?


Michael