We’ve all heard about the Irish welcome. With the magic of modern technology, we got a chance to capture the Irish welcome in action this week, as the Irish twitterverse came to the rescue of one of our guests.
A French mother, Sophie, arrived with four children this week. Hours after they arrived, Sophie couldn’t find the car keys for her Citroen car. They searched her bag, the cottage, her car and the road that they had walked earlier, en route to the shop. No keys. She asked us for help. It was Sunday evening. My husband asked the local shopkeeper, but no keys there. There were emails, lengthy phone calls and Skype calls to Sophie’s husband, in France. He found a lot of keys, but was not at all sure that he had found the right one. He resolved to courier a key to us the next day. Sophie was anxious, as a holiday without a car was not part of the plan. Her return trip was booked on the boat for six days’ time, and her car was part of the deal. We promised Sophie that we would find out how to get a duplicate key and that we would deal with the garage, if it came to that. I have two twitter accounts, so I put a call out on twitter.
There was a huge response from Irish tweeple. From students, from business people and fron the general public. They gave useful, practical advice. Several people sent multiple tweets. Here are eleven of the responses as a sample.
We even got some tweets from Suzanne Sheridan, the Press Officer for the Society of the Irish Motor Industry. How cool is that?.
Above and beyond
Everybody was very helpful. @mirianahern asked if there was anything she could do to help and even offered to help with French translation. She put out a great call on twitter, see above, and inspired many of the responses. Gianni Ponzi (@gianniponzi) contacted Liam Ruth (@liamruth) on twitter. Liam, who works for local Citroen dealer, JJ Byrne, gave very specific information to Gianni. Gianni then sent an SMS text message to me. From this, we knew that ordering a new key from Citroen would take 8/9 days, (too long), and that we needed to get the transponder code from the JJ Byrne to be able to instruct a locksmith to cut a new key. We even had a phone number to call at 9am on Monday morning and an estimate of the cost.
Sophie had the O’Hare family as holiday neighbours in the cottage-next-door. They offered to bring the family to the early morning train on Tuesday. This is a half hour journey, and meant that the O’Hare family had to get up at 7am. On holiday. And they also offered to return in the evening to meet her from the train. We gave her a map of Dublin with all the highlights marked.
In other news, the key had been despatched by courier from France, at a cost of €50. It was the right key.
Great Minds think Alike
These two ladies responded with an almost identical response to the news that key that was found.
The response was fast and accurate. Everybody identified with the plight of a mother in a foreign land, and rallied to help. The Irish welcome is alive and well and living on Twitter! We’ll leave the last word to Paula Ronan (@paularonan).