I’m Alan. Welcome to my Blog. I’m 25, a writer, comedian, journalist and I have a passion for discovering all things new in life. This summer, over 6 weeks I travelled by bus from the very top to the very bottom and to all sides and middles of this lovely green patch of land.
With the help of my followers, I discovered great places, met interesting people, attended some great events, gigs and festivals. This blog is a record of this amazing experience, I hope it gives you inspiration.
Kicking it at the UEFA Europa League Final
So, my journey has begun. Not too far to travel to start off with, just across the city and past 50,000 Queen-Barriers. From Busáras, I crossed the road to Connolly Station and got on the DART aka The Porto Fans Express and very quickly I had the stadium in my sights.
Lovely simple journey. To begin the adventure I went to the Europa League Final in Dublin Arena (Aviva?Never heard of it). On the way to the match I walked in a sea of blue and white, kind of like a normal sea, but this one was made up of FC Porto supporters. They hugely outnumbered the FC Braga fans, and they seemed to be having a lot of fun, so I decided to be up for them. From that point on I was a proud Porto fan, and my mood would depend upon how well they performed. The Dublin Arena (what Aviva? I have no idea what you're on about) is wonderful. It was so clean and beautiful and modern and stylish. I had a nicely placed-behind-the-goals-seat in the premium section so I was delighted. The opening ceremony started, loads of people in matching white tracksuits marched onto the pitch in a straight line that a ruler would be proud of. Some held flags, others held - I dont know, pride. They walked around in diagonals and squares while some more elaborately dressed people danced to the epic arena-celtic music. Some magnificent banners were laid out with information that everyone in the crowd already knew, for example, what was on and who was playing. I didn't expect anyone to jump out of their seat and say "Europa League Final? I thought this was the Olympia!". I also couldn't help wondering what they do with those enormous pitch sized pieces of fabric after they have fulfilled their single purpose. During this performance the players snuck out onto the pitch, and no one seemed to notice. Many of the players opted for this inconspicuous style of play throughout the whole match. The match was nearly uneventful except for the goal from Porto in the 44th minute, and the incredible miss by Braga at the start of the 2nd half. After the game the speakers belted out more arena-celt music and the Porto players - after rolling eventually to a one goal victory - danced their way around the pitch showing off their latest silverware. It was very simple exiting the stadium and I was never caught in a queue or a stampede. It's quite the place, I recommend it. This weekend I'll be heading across to Galway to check out some medieval tunage!