Monday, December 1, 2008

To smoke or not to smoke.....

The Irish set down the marker for the rest of the world to follow in terms of the smoking ban.

But now it seems that in some countries where a smoking ban doesn’t exist – it does when the man who created it in Ireland comes for a visit.

During Micheal Martin’s whistle stop trip to Georgia, one local hostelry decided that it couldn’t, in good conscience, allow its regulars to smoke while Micheal was in the building.

The Hangar pub in Tblisi is one of a number of Irish pubs in the Georgian capital and it was also the local for an informal meeting between Minister Martin and a group of academics from a Georgian university.

And just to make sure that the Minister felt at home in the pub, there was a sign prominently displayed on the door of the establishment saying: ‘For one night only, smoking will not be allowed on the first floor of this bar’.

Naturally enough, the Minister was tickled that the temporary ban was implemented in his honour.

But this column can reveal that as soon as ‘Elvis left the building’, the ashtrays came out and the status quo was restored!!

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