>Ballyfermot Resource Centre

>The place I grew up in Dublin is a working-class suburb. In my whole time living there, there was never any place you could go to eat out, unless you counted the takeaways or the pubs which sometimes did food at lunchtimes.

In England, even if there are no restaurants you will always find a little cafe where you can pick up breakfast or lunch on the run. Ballyfermot didn’t even have this. Until now.

My brother is associated with the Ballyfermot Resource Centre, a place which provides services for the local community like self-help groups, a counselling service, adult education and childcare. It also has a little cafe which offers breakfasts and lunches to the people in the adult education centre upstairs and anybody else who wanders in. They also cater for the local meals on wheels service.

Whilst being shown around by my brother one morning, Theresa the restaurant manager offered me lunch but I couldn’t stay. So I popped in another morning for a chat and breakfast. Most people in the cafe at that time of the morning were eating a full Irish breakfast which looked and smelt delicious, but I opted for a toasted bacon sandwich. Well done bacon and well done toast, I said cautiously: there is nothing worse than a limp undercooked bacon butty. Theresa sat down with a healthy bowl of muesli for her breakfast, and Angela the centre manager joined us for a chat.

My mug of tea was scalding hot, and the teabag had been added to the mug at the kettle (the little things one takes for granted in Ireland – most tea in Australia is made with not-quite-boiling water and it shows). My bacon sandwich was perfect: excellent quality Irish bacon well cooked on the grill, and perfectly-done toast. I savoured every mouthful.

Angela and Theresa laughed when I promised them that I would post a review of their cafe online, but here it is. I was only sorry I couldn’t stick around for lunch. I shall save that for my next trip.

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