Proper big mountains, hot weather that lasts all summer and not having to get on a plane every weekend to get a decent amount of competition in a race can make living in Europe look attractive but I haven’t left Ireland for a whole month and sometimes its good to appreciate what you have.
There are not many places you can live in walking distance of a big city centre but ride from your front door to mountains like these, which are rideable for 95% of the year. The variety of trails is amazing from woodland singletrack, to manmade trails, to big rocky open mountain tracks and with the bonus of plenty of other elite riders to go training with.
Its not just the mountains though, I have an increasing appreciation for the sea. You can swim in the sea without leaving the city, the water is even warm at the moment (17 degrees according to one of the enthusiastic locals!) and there is a whole Dublin subculture to be discovered down there with hardened old guys who swim everyday even when temperatures are below freezing in winter.
If only we had a bridge to Europe Dublin would be perfect.
Ok and a better economy too.