Well the blog should be up and running now. Any more technical glitches will just have to wait until I get home. I know that once we set foot back in Ireland it’ll be back to madness. The Courts are back on October 6th so I’m back in the day job. Sharon Collins and Essam Eid will be putting in an appearance on the 8th and that’s when the circus will really get started.
There have always been high profile cases through the Irish courts but since Joe O’Reilly was sentenced in July 2007 there has been one after the other. Anton Mulder, Brian Kearney, John O’Brien all came before the Collins, Eid trial and all can still sell papers today months after their various convictions and acquittals. We have moved without noticing it into a time where criminal trials are hyped almost as much as Hollywood films in the Irish media. I should know. To a certain extent my job depends on it!
Collins and Eid is a special case though – and I’m not just saying that because I’ve written a book on it. The fact that no one died and proceedings had more than a tinge of farce to them meant that this was less of a guilty pleasure than the family tragedies that normally hit the headlines. That’s not to say that people weren’t hurt as a result of these proceedings, it’s simply that we didn’t have to listen to the post mortems of their grief in quite the same way.
There’s also been a delayed conclusion. With a murder trial there is only one possible sentence on conviction. As soon as that verdict is handed down whoever’s in the dock knows they are about to start a life sentence and an appeal will be formally refused. With conspiracy to murder there is a need for a separate sentencing as no fixed penalty has been set out. So we will all gather on October 8th and wait with Collins and Eid to hear their fate and there will be headlines and TV programmes and books and some people will wonder publicly whether the whole things has perhaps all got a bit too much.
But in the meantime, I’m on holiday. When I was a student in Bordeaux I always daydreamed of returning one day to work on a book. Now as I sit by the window in our rented apartment gazing out of the window onto all the old yellow stone leaving it to the very last moment before I get ready to go out to dinner with the husband I’m conscious of how close I came to that. The book may have actually been written in Dublin but I still don’t have an end for it, and won’t until that sentence. So I’m technically still writing it. Looking back over this post though, the sun’s playing havoc with my syntax and sprouting flourishes in every clause that probably shouldn’t even be there.
There’s a church here called St Pierre, not far from our apartment. It’s a quiet little church, all vaulted ceilings and candles. To the right of the door there’s a statue of a saint I’d never heard of – Ste Expedite. The statue is of a very pretty Roman legionary holding a cross that says Hodie, the Latin for hello and stamping on a crow that’s cawing Cras meaning tomorrow. He’s big in Chile and New Orleans apparently. He’s also the patron saint of procrastinators, and computer hackers.
I discovered all this when I googled him after we’d wandered in to avoid the heat of the afternoon sun. There’s also some doubt about whether he actually existed or whether he was simply some random bones that had been labelled expedis, basically First Class Post, when they were shipped out to some French speaking nuns for cataloguing. But Rome decided to give him the benefit of the doubt.
Ste Expedite seems a very appropriate saint for this current endeavour. I’ve certainly done my fair share of procrastinating and I like the idea he may or may not have existed, rather like Sharon Collins’ alibi, Maria Marconi. There’s even computer hackers in there as well.
Well I’ve rambled enough. There’s an evening going on out there that I’m ignoring and the husband is looking a little irritated. I should probably try to focus on actually having a holiday before there’s no more time for procrastination.