I think I might officially be a local now. Since moving Leeside, I’ve successfully managed to adapt certain proclivities including but not limited to queueing for a KC – in the rain. Any Corkonian worth their salt and vinegar knows that 4:30 bells mark the daily opening of the titular award-winning chipper KC & Sons.
Located in Douglas village, the tiny red cottage nestled on the main street is no ordinary takeaway, it’s an institution. For a blow-in like me, a rite of passage is necessary and expected. I had already scaled Patrick’s Hill without incurring a collapsed lung but, sadly, had no witnesses. I also waited for the phantom bus (aka the 220) for north of 30 minutes on several occasions – in the rain. Alas, no pats on the back. Joining the rank and file of the hungry puters that have been known to form a line past the shopping centre (December 28th, 2018; fact) for the seductive lure of chips and blue cheese mayo seemed the easier rite of passage. Plus, there’s the street cred. Seriously, there’s a t-shirt business in this folks. But I digress.
Since my first delicious hazing ritual, I’ve held many an indecent thought about acquainting myself with The Angry Spaniard (hot pitta filled with acorn-fed chorizo, chicken, hot sauce, chips, mayo and shredded iceberg lettuce) or going hog-wild with The Squealer (slow roasted pork sliced and coated in homemade BBQ sauce over chips with lettuce, gherkins and a dollop of creamy mayo). Although a friend from Cobh reliably informs me, that I have not lived until having tried a King Creole (Chicken breast fillet pieces roasted in blackened Cajun spices, served in a hot pitta with mayonnaise, iceberg lettuce and a few chips inside). Chips, chips, glorious chips – can’t bloody beat them.
Short story long, a funny thing happened a few days ago. I received a framed pen and ink drawing by Corkidoodledo artist Jill Cotter as a gift from the MII 2019 ball at which I was a guest. Cotter, a CCAD grad, sketches the city’s eye-catching buildings and eclectic streetscapes. Coincidentally, mine happened to be rendering of my new spiritual home – KC. Call it coincidence, call it kismet; I like to think the Universe bore testament to my neighbourhood initiation. As a self-appointed citizen of the People’s Republic, I think I chose my tribal affiliations well. Now half a stone heavier but, sure, that’s what the hills are for.