Thursday, April 17, 2008

Sometimes it's okay to say hello

I like Dublin. I like meeting people and I like seeing new things. I love the art that's there - often it's not recognised (and I'll blog about that later) but sometimes the things you find are a little special.

Do you - if you spend much time in Dublin city centre - recognise this man?

His name is Paul. He's 29 - same age as me. He knows some of the same people I do - he talks to my friend Pat a lot. He doesn't like the rain, but has a good attitude to taking the good with the bad.

Not many people talk to Paul. Yet they know his art. They'll stop and look, and sometimes take pictures. When they see Paul he looks like this:

Paul is drawing for a living. He's homeless, and rather than just beg, he writes and illustrates his poem at the end of Grafton Street beside the Molly Malone or sometimes near O' Connell Bridge.

Sometimes he'll just be finished and it will rain, or skangers will try to vandalise it or the guards will move him on before he finishes.

And if he does finish, people will come up. Some will donate, some will just take photos and move on. Many don't say a word.

That can't be easy.

So even if I don't have change or much time, I try to stop and say hello. He's a nice guy and he's very talented. He was very open to me taking these photos and talking to him. He said that he likes to talk to people, when they talk to him.

It made me think of this song, something we learned in 5th class. One of those songs I still know off by heart.


  1. I swear we're connected in some way. Before I pressed play I was singing to myself, "Have you seen the old man...". I too learned that in fifth class. I too still know it off by heart.

  2. hey darragh, really good post. only came across your blog recently - keep up the good work!

  3. Nice post. Yeah I know that face well. And have seen the poem many times. Must say hello next time.

  4. Wow.

    Fair play to you Dar.

  5. Hi darragh

    you're very prolific ! keep it up !

    all the best

  6. Everyone learned that in fifth class!
    singing that and readsing the story of zacchaus was all we ever done in religion.

    I seen this fella in dublin last time I was there, thought he was the sand man from electric picnic.