Derrick, 2008, photographed in Douglas, Ireland
Back in 2008, I was in Ireland, County Cork to be exact, on business. One of those grand annual report photo shoots I used to have the pleasure of overseeing and art directing.
The shoot was done and I had an extra day, a Saturday, to spend looking around a bit. I called a cab service to pick me up at the Maryborough Hotel.
He and his taxi picked me up to go to Blarney Castle early on Saturday morning. We were trying to chat, me in the back, he in the front but it was difficult. He pulled over and told me to come up to the front. Much better. Derek then proceed to chat with me about life in Ireland, business, this, that and the other thing. When I was done at Blarney Castle, I rang him up and he took me to Midleton. When I was done in Midleton, he was waiting for me to take me back to the hotel.
Along the course of the way I found out he was from Blackrock, Ireland, was married there, has never been to the U.S. OR inside Blarney Castle. He used to be on the mechanical side of the business and has been driving a cab for about four years, making his own hours and driving as much, or as little as he want. As we wound through Douglas, he pointed out Ronan O’Gara’s house, a local rugby star that had been born int he U.S. but made his name in Ireland, being named team captain.
I don’t know much about rugby but Derrick recommend I watch a match that evening. It featured the All Blacks team from New Zealand. I don’t remember who they played, but I do remember watching it while sipping some Beamish stout.
At the time, I was still working on my 100 Strangers project so I asked Derrick if I could take his portrait. He was number 22.
Oh, of course, Flo made the trip to Ireland as well.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day, all.
(c)Mark O’Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | 2016