Sun, boaters and oysters come out for Bloomsday

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Sun, boaters and oysters come out for Bloomsday

Joycean characters joined chefs and literati on a pilgrimage to landmarks from ‘Ulysses’, writes Liam Collins


Moreno Maialen, from Spain, and Fabio Alvarado, from Colombia, at the Bloomsday celebrations in Sandycove. Below Carole Ward from Dublin. Pictures: Tony Gavin
Moreno Maialen, from Spain, and Fabio Alvarado, from Colombia, at the Bloomsday celebrations in Sandycove. Below Carole Ward from Dublin. Pictures: Tony Gavin

As if on cue, the “snot green sea” beneath the Martello Tower in Sandycove took on a Mediterranean-like hue as the sun came out to give a Bloomsday of “mild morning air”.

Already, 114 years after James Joyce immortalised the day, there was an orderly queue of Joyceans, dressed in their Edwardian costume, waiting at 8am to access the stairhead of the tower where “stately plump Buck Mulligan” shaved himself on June 16, 1904, in the opening scene of Ulysses.

By 9am, the main street of Glasthule had a party-like atmosphere as stately Peter Caviston presided over tables laden with the “inner organs of beast and fowl” and the early morning popping of Champagne corks. Eamon Morrissey and Barry McGovern read extracts from the book once banned in Ireland and that modern Joycean figure of ‘Mattress Mick’ was in attendance as waiters bustled between the tables crowding the footpath.

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