Ah, Dublin – where the sounds of the city mingle with the roar of the traffic and the endless yammer of construction (when will those Luas works ever be over?!). There are certain sounds you'll hear in Dublin city that you just won't hear anywhere else, and we're not being nostalgic.
Love them or loathe them – and with a lot of these, the jury is firmly out – these are the noises that make our city.
1. The squawk of a rabid seagull coming for your lunch
There's something about the seagulls of Dublin: no fear, no concept of their place in the pecking order – or is it the opposite, that they know exactly where they are in the circle of life, and that's above us, eating our food?!
2. An endless cacaphony of thank-yous
You can't pass a till in Dublin without hearing people saying thank you. The customer says thanks as they hand over the money; the shop assistant says thanks as they accept it; thanks for the change; thanks for your custom; thanks for the receipt... Jesus effing Christ, will someone ever just say you're welcome and be done with it?!
3. That fucker with the vuvuzela
You know you're in the north inner city when you hear the unmistakeable sound of a vuvuzela. We have no idea who that dude is, but we know where we'd like to shove that vuvuzela...
4. Wrappin' paper, five for FIFTEEEEEE!
Ah, Henry St – Christmas is a particularly unbearable time of year to be traipsing up the northside's primo shopping street, but you'll find street traders at any time of year.
In December it's wrapping paper / designer handbags / Minion teddies; summertimes it's straaaaaaaahbreeeeeeez or raaaaaaaazbreeeeeeez; for the rest of the year it's an exciting lucky dip of street bargains.
5. That busker playing the fucking flute
You'd think, wouldn't you, that the flute would be quite a relaxing instrument. You'd think that it'd be a nicer sound to listen to than, say, bagpipes, or seagulls, or street traders hawking counterfeit goods at Christmas. Well, you'd be wrong – try sitting outside Joe's at Arnotts on a sunny day and listening to bizarrely tuneless flute-playing for hours on end. We guarantee you'd give your last Rolo for a fucking bagpipe.
6. The roar of an excited child on the Viking Splash Tour
So there you are, minding your own business, walking along playing Pokémon Go, when all of a sudden you get the fright of your fucking life – and all because some arsehole has taken their six kids on the Viking Splash Tour, and all six of them are roaring at you from outside the side of the boat / bus / horror ride.
7. Thanks hun, Penneys!
This might be the oldest Dublin joke in the book – but it's funny because it's true. Tell a Dublin woman you like her outfit and, nine times out of 10, this is what you'll hear back. No wonder it's Ireland's second most famous export (after McGregor, obvs).
8. The ding-ding of an approaching Luas
It's been around for more than a decade now, but either we still forget that the Luas exists, or we just don't care – you'll see around 10 pedestrians walking out in front of the Luas on a daily basis. And when the tram driver beeps? They'll get a dismissive hand – the definitive "ah, sure, would you feck off."
9. "Fuck you, ye prick!"
Said to the man who cuts you off at a roundabout, the guy who gets the last sausage roll at Spar, and your mate, who just told you he thinks you're looking a bit pasty. It's the one-size-fits-all insult-slash-term of endearment. Ah, Dublin...