The Brazilians, the knackers and the morning glory

Not so long ago, I received a very nice mail from a local here. He told me that he stumbled across the blog, read the stories and gave me some very nice compliments about my outlook on Brazilian life here in Bh. He continued to tell me of a not-so-secret-society, that get together for pints every month and talk about Ireland!. Of course I was intrigued. Some of you may be surprised to know, that I am actually Irish, being born and raised in the great city that is Dublin. Enthralled I continued reading, he said that he was part of a group called E-Dublin, that consists of people that have been to or are making their way to Dublin, either for study, or work or even both. There’s even a website that you can enter which gives you all sorts of handy tips for the Brazilian community living in Dublin!. I was really impressed and delighted that Marcello had got in contact with me.  Their monthly meeting was coming up, and he invited me and my wife to come along, unfortunately at the time, we had an appointment with Ouro Preto, but promised that we would come the next month. In the mean time other people have got in contact with me from E-Dublin and had said how they were looking forward to meeting up.

That night arrived last night, Thursday Nov.11th. All in all there were about 15 people!, most of them had not been to Dublin, but were about to set sail, some in December, some in March, some arriving just before St.Patricks Day and some later on in 2011.

How was it?. It was truly a lovely evening. I was kind of put in the lime light a bit, being from the city that has the same name as the little reserved sign on the table, so as you can imagine…I was loving it ;o)

Like anybody going to a foreign country, of course they had their questions, but it’s not just going to another country, it’s another continent, and for the 1st time. Europe, even more so Ireland is indeed very different from Brazil. They are all very excited. So of course it was a free for all, and they all took advantage of me, my birth place and their future home (for a while anyway) and along side their pints of beer, laid out all their questions and doubts on the table in front of me.

One of the guys asked me is there any problems with race, this particular guy is  black. I told him that a few years ago, when there was a huge influx of immigrants arriving into Dublin, we had a problem with some Africans, mainly from Nigeria, but that everything seemed to be good now, and that they even have their own little neighbourhood in Dublin’s centre;  shops, hairdressers  and bars, and that they had integrated themselves into Irish society. So, ‘No’ was the simple answer to his question. There are lots of blacks, and various other colours living in the Ireland’s capital. We even have ‘red-necks’, (people from the ‘country’ i.e outside Dublin, who, when of younger age, were politely slapped on the back on the neck and told “get your arse to Dublin and get a job”, hence the red-neck). I kind of laughed to myself, because what I really wanted to tell him was that not only will he be greeted with open arms, but that he’ll probably become a star there.This kid is black, but he also happens to be very good-looking, he could probably get a job as a model. Now to Brazilians, he’s probably ‘ok’ looking, but to the Irish, he’s going to be an absolute ‘ride’.  He has your standard Brazilian white teeth, which just automatically gives him a perfect smile without even trying. This combined with the general jovial character of the Brazilians will win him a lot of popularity contests especially with the Dublin ladies. So maybe I should have told him ‘Yes’, that actually he may have problems in Dublin, he may find himself being chased around the city by hoards of screaming women. I probably should have informed him of the rather large gay society that exists in Dublin too. Opps, it obviously slipped my mind.

One of the other cards that was placed in front of me to tackle which was even funnier. And it was put to me like this:

“Will we have any problems with… the knackers? “.

I nearly wet myself at this one. He could have said the mafia and it would have had the same tone. But it seems that a couple of  friends of one of the lads there got into a bit of strive in Dublin with a group of knackers. Now, there are two kinds of knackers, there are the Knackers, who are generally working class people, not very well educated and like causing problems for everybody. Then there are the disident groups who like to be referred to as the real knackers. These choose to live in caravans, generally parade around country, pick a lovely field and then camp there for a year or two, generally destroying the place, and causing problems for the locals who live nearby. They are generally aggressive, smelly and ride horses all the time. I myself have bad childhood memories of them. Once, two of them riding huge horses through our estate, came galloping at me and stole my jacket off my chopper (bike). I was 9 years old. I’ll never forget it, it’s left marks I swear. As well, the women would go around all the houses, looking for money, “a penny for the baaaby?”, they would bark at you. “Get lost”, I’d scream at them. “Your ‘baby’ has me feckin jacket!”.

Don’t confuse them with Tinkers, gypsies, hippies, or The travelling community, who again choose to live in caravans or such, but don’t cause any problems for anybody. Which ever band the knackers fall into, avoid them. But I informed my inquisitive audience that as long as you keep a good head and you are weary of your surroundings, you won’t have any problems with anyone. But whatever you do, if you wander upon a group of them,  don’t call them ‘knackers’, they wont like that, not at all. If you do, or it just slips out of your mouth like;

“Meu deus!, os knackers!”,

Well then you’ll have to use your Brazilian legs and run very fast!.

E-Dublin’s main concern about going to Dublin was the language. And to be honest it probably should be. None of them speak English. I know exactly what its like to arrive in a country and not speak a word of the local lingo. But at least for me, English is the language every one wants to learn, there’s always somebody who can speak English. But I don’t think their exists many Dubliners who speak Portuguese. But this is not their big problem, to their surprise they may find that not a lot of Dubliners speak English either. They speak Dublin, or you could say ..Dublinish!.

So I decided to give them a crash course in Dublinish.

‘Slainte’ – It’s actually Irish, and means cheers, and is said when clanking your pints of Guinness together in the pub.

‘Howya’ – means “how are you?”

‘Grand’ – Standard answer to Howya. It means fine.

‘Yer man’ – means ‘that guy there?’, it doenst mean your man!.

‘Yer woman’ – means ‘that girl there’, it doens’t mean your girl!.

‘Story’?- short for Whats the story? – Means ‘whats going on?’, ‘how are you doing’, etc.

To this, one of the lads then said “Ah yes, like the song, “Whats the story morning glory?” by Oasis. “I love that song, great, that’s easy, I’ll use that all the time so”, he continued in Portuguese.

“But do you know what ‘Morning glory’ means?” I asked them all.

They shook their heads.

“It’s the erection guys have when they wake up in the morning”.

They burst out laughing. They hadn’t a clue!.

On that note, I felt that was enough for one evening and will continue their Dublinish classes the next night. And I look forward to meeting them again. It was a very pleasant night. Good people.  Dublin will only gain from their smiles, their friendlyness  and their good nature.

The last question just as I was leaving: “Will it be cold in Ireland Keith?” .

I laughed again. That was too funny.


E-Dublin website:

Dublin slang:




4 Responses to “The Brazilians, the knackers and the morning glory”
  1. Cla says:

    So cool! I wish I could have been there!

  2. Rachel Rants says:

    Sounds like it was a great time!

  3. Marc says:

    great article !!

    I´m in Goiaina and getting similar questions about Ireland

  4. Marc says:

    great article ! those lads are going have a great time in Dublin

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