1. Hangovers

Fuckin’ hell, the head on me today. Us Irish drink like no others when we get together, so our hangovers match the effort. We don’t feel fully Irish without them.

2. Hangover food

Chicken fillet baguette, cheese, and onion Tayto, bottle of Lucozade, fry. Cured.

3. The sun

Ok, so there’s rarely sun, but the transformative power that is has makes Ireland the best place in the world when it actually shines. Cancel work, cancel school, get your bikini out and join the street party. Because it’s on.

4. Interactions with strangers

Irish people love to chat. About the weather, about the bus being late, about the water charges, about the referendum. In Ireland, you don’t have to know someone for them to be your friend for 5 minutes.

5. Joe Duffy

Joe fucking Duffy. How is he even still on the radio? But I guess as long as people have something to complain about, he’ll still have an audience.

6. Knackers

A truly Irish cultural phenomenon, knackers are scumbags who will steal your phone and egg you, but Ireland wouldn’t be Ireland without them.

7. Mam and Dad

Of course you’ll miss the auld pair. Irish parents are a special breed of brilliant, and no one can make a cup of tea like them.

8. The craic

The banter in Ireland is unrivaled, and no amount of trawling “Irish” pubs abroad will come close to finding it.

9. The perfect pint

Barmen abroad just do not get Guinness. It’s all in the 2 stage pour, and only at home have they got this down pat.

10. The canal

Ahhhhhhhhh the canal. No better place to meet after work than down on Portobello Bridge in summer and sip on an ice-cold Bulmers.

11. Drug loopholes

Once in a while, the Irish system fucks up and for a few precious days, Class A’s, B’s or C’s are actually legal. Take the next few days off, because everyone’s getting loose.

12. Going into town

I don’t know if “going into town”, or “town” itself is a thing in other countries, but in Ireland it encompasses the idea of that urban centre, where everybody knows your name and you can pick up a few bits.

13. Leaving Dublin

It’s easy to ensconce yourself in the capital and forget that the rest of our little island is exceptionally beautiful, and so so close. Two hours across, six hours down, you’ll never know unless you go.

14. Going on about the recession

Since 2008, complaining about the recession has been a binding force among people across our tiny nation. There’s solidarity in a good moan.

15. The useless Gardai

Irish police, or the Gardai, are the laughing stock of the country. They speak in culchie tones and never have any “leads.” Ever.

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