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Jul 08

What a trip. Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant. The European Championships in France was everything I hoped it would be and more. Such a fantastic trip in so many ways.

First (and foremost), the football. Northern Ireland qualified for the second round, the knockout stage, and that was a big bonus. We always thought we had a chance of course, but I don’t think too many of us really expected it. We won a game – we only won once in the four we played, but still – so we got to see us both gain three points AND score not once, but twice. Funny really that it was deemed such a success when we lost three out of four matches and only managed to score in one.

But the country was great, the craic was great, the people were great, the other fans were great… one of the things I enjoyed most was just meeting other supporters from other countries. Getting to chat, joke, spend time with the Liechtensteiners, the Icelandic, the English and everyone else was something I really looked forward to whether it was in bars, at the ground, or on the train. And I got to meet up with a lot of my friends, some of whom I hadn’t seen in years, and catch up with them as we talked about… well, mostly football if I’m honest.

I ended up staying 16 nights and then went back to Belfast for eight nights, finishing off with two nights in London on the way back to Louisiana. Not all just pleasure, some other work adventures and opportunities may be on the horizon as well. More later.

For now I will have to content myself with watching the final on Sunday between Portugal and France, and wishing I was back in the Land of Fromage…