Sarsfield Bridge

This is an archived post from Walking Around Like We Own the Place:

I have asked a couple of people what their favourite spot in the city is. As an example I said to one person that my favourite place was the Old Bridge (Sarsfield Bridge), and here was my attempt at explaining why:

“…I can’t really say why exactly, but it’s been like a catwalk for self-conscious/fabulous teenage me, and also a tunnel between “town” and “not town”, and I’ve walked over it so many, many times, and it always means something to walk over it – I’m always going somewhere if I’m on the old bridge – to a night club, to work, to something arty, or to lovely home. And you meet people you know sometimes…”

And this person replied that the Old Bridge is their favourite place in the city too – or, more precisely, the middle of it – and this is her explanation:

“…I’ve been going over and back across that bridge much like yourself, all my life, I used to be terrified as a child that I would fall in through the balustrades so I like holding hands with someone going across it, I remember holding my mother’s hands crossing it, holding my father’s hand to help him across it when he was sick and before he died, holding hands with numerous boyfriends, linking arms with friends chatting as we went across it, and taking my own children across it by the hand. In and out of town, over and back across the bridge, on a bus to school, in a car, walking, cycling, being pushed in a pram, pushing a pram, happy, sad, alone, with someone, sober and drunk, over and back, over and back, my whole life, I’m crossing the Shannon…”

I wonder how many thousands of people have epic associations with the old bridge, that little old bridge. I remember I saw Sonia O’Sullivan jog across it once too!