John Perry lies about cancer services

At The Big Ticket event in Sligo on 16/Feb/2011, local Fine Gael candidate John Perry said if he was elected cancer services would be restored to Sligo General Hospital. He also stated that if it did not happen within the first 100 days of government he would resign from Fine Gael.

101 days after getting into government he announced that cancer services would not be restored. He then lied about saying he would resign.

John Perry will say anything for a vote.

Tracking a letter in the post with GPS

Post boxes are kind of like routers. You can hand a message to them and they will pass it on to further nodes in the system until it is delivered to its intended destination. With routers messages do not always seem to take a very direct route. If you trace a simple ping to a website in the US it sometimes bounces over to the UK or Europe first.

My local Edwardian postbox.

The beautiful Edwardian router above is just around the corner from my house. Unfortunately I can not use this one as someone decided to vandalise it. These red boxes were installed by the British in the first few years of the 1900’s and painted green after Irish independence. You can still see the royal insignia on it (ER VII).

I wondered what route a letter posted in my own local post box would take so I posted a GPS tracker to myself. I posted the letter at the nearest working post box which is about 2km from my house. Over the next 24 hours the letter ended going on a 230km round-trip via Athlone before circling back to my house!

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As I said, post boxes are kind of like routers, they don’t always send messages in a direct route.

The Mill apartments, Ballisodare

Yesterday I took a walk around The Mill apartment complex in Ballisodare. The project of 75 apartments was built on the site of a beautiful old mill on the Owenmore river about 5 miles from Sligo town. Finished in 2006, it was billed as “a property that simply has it all”, with 2 bedroom apartments starting from €320,000.

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Things didn’t quite work out that way and it looks like hardly anyone ever moved in. I heard stories of dampness issues with the building that delayed sales of the apartments. I guess when 2008 came around it was doomed. There are no warning signs telling you not to enter, I did not have to jump any gates or wall to get in. I simply walked from the main road down and in the front door.

It is like a scene from ’28 days later’ inside. Windows are smashed, partition walls are kicked in, the large dark empty car park has had all of its wiring and cables stripped. There are screws all over the floor from all of the doors and fittings that have been removed. Copper water tanks have been long ripped out of each apartment.

Its a shame that this place was built in place of the old mill which stood for over a century, but its a tragedy that it was not maintained and used to house someone. It must have cost between €5m and €10m to build and now its worth nothing. Water and electricity are cut off and the only sounds are the dying batteries in the smoke alarms.

Remember that this development was pretty much finished and ready for tenants in 2006.

I found the text for the original brochure on the way back machine so I will use it to contrast how it all looks now…

Read more (with pictures)

The Bad Picture

Nestled away in the twisting mountains,
lies a beacon of despair.

Mildewed cold cheap fittings.
Landscape manicured beyond repair.

The lake, just a huge hole filled with water,
and people who are not really there.

Above the spinning blades gaze down,
and leave us filled with with fear…
at night their red eyes still gaze.

At first I thought a convent,
but a convent would be filled with books?

This place is the bad picture
that someone came and took.

Note: “Your friends faces light up…its everything you dreamed of and you are brimming with pride.”

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