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Rathlin Again
Hala Gulah Drinks
andyluke
So I have this character. She signs on the dole and is frustrated at not being legally allowed more than two days of holiday a year. So she creates a character, and he decides to book a weekend on Rathlin Island. It's a small spot off sandy Antrim Coast, joined by a thirty minute ferry. There's a population of 106, and there's a once-removed nature about it. In the summer, it's paradise, and the people know what they have. They're protective, yet welcoming. You can walk the hill trails, meet loughs, and forests and lighthouses, spot seals, rare hares, birds. Much of the communal activity takes place around the bar by the harbour. The first hostel opened on the island earlier this year. The character added days to either side of the trip, until it became a week. Apparently July 13-20 was festival week, with a comedy night before featuring great comedians such as Sean Hegarty.

The character my character was writing about took lots of photographs.

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The character found it difficult to knuckle down and write stories. The location has it's limits that somehow make it seem...unlimited, a resonating freedom through time. One day though, he bashed out 30,000 words. Knackered, he slept, then took to the bar for a celebratory swill. That night, he met more sailors, these from a sailing school that take beginners up on long-haul cruises. As he told them he was a writer, they pitched to him a free course sail around Ireland and Scotland in exchange for promotional writing based on his experience. As he was working on a book about sailing and had no experience, this appealed to him. He thought about it, and when he got home, requested a voluntary work form.

Video: Sean Hegarty's stand-up
Audio: Warren Ellis on beer and the Garth Ennis Stag Party

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