MY DONEGAL WITH WET AND WILD OUTDOOR SHOP OWNER GUS O’DRISCOLL

first_imgBusinessman Gus O’Driscoll is the owner of Letterkenny’s much-loved Wet N Wild outdoor shop. A keen diver, here Gus tell us what he loves about Donegal and why he wants tearooms at the foot of Mt Errigal!What is your favourite place in Donegal and why?The summit of Errigal at sunrise on a cold Spring morning. The 360 degree view that encompasses Dunlewey Gola Tory & Rosguill illuminated by the rising sun could make a millionaire out of the poorest man in the world! If you could change one thing about Donegal what would it be?Reverse the “smash and grab” that successive governments have foisted on Donegal signing away our oil rights and our fishing rights with a consequent decimation of entrepreneurship in once thriving rural communities to the point where the Donegal’s greatest remaining asset its youth are now being sacrificed to emigration. Who is the one person in Donegal that you look up to and why?I am thinking about the “unsung heroes” Donegal people who go above and beyond the call of duty on a voluntary basis and slip quietly into the background when their job is done without fuss. Ramelton man Bernard Collins is a shining example who as a Search & Recovery diver delivered with dignity such a service for more than 25 years to the community with zero recognition.Daniel O’Donnell or Packie Bonner?Daniel without reservation- About 20 years ago my wife Libby took my brother Brian who has an intellectual disability to the Viking Hotel having phoned ahead to ask if Daniel might be about and although he was away he ensured that a signed card was left waiting for Brian who remains a lifelong fan and probably holds the largest collection of Daniel O Donnell CD’s in the world.What has been Donegal’s proudest moment in recent years?That primal moment last Sunday when Michael Murphy almost bursted the net with a thundering goal and all over Donegal thousands of pints spilled, grannies screamed, Enda Kenny’s face dropped and Monday was cancelled within a heartbeat! .What was Donegal’s saddest moment? More than a few sad moments down the years as a Search & Recovery diver where families maintained silent vigils sometimes for weeks as divers searched off piers and bridges for the remains of young people lost to suicide to try and bring closure to the bereaved.What is your favourite Donegal-made product?My wife Libby 20 years on and getting better with age!.Who is Donegal’s greatest ambassador around the world and why? Daniel O Donnell has done more down the years than Bord Failte that’s for sure! I think that Daniel projects the integrity work ethic honesty and warmth of Donegal and its people.Who is Donegal’s most successful businessperson in your opinion?Any small business owner in the County still managing to keep their boat afloat at the present time. If we were American companies the government would tip the cap and bestow grants walk in factories and tax holidays but for SME’s nothing but modern day slavery! Donegal Hotelier Jim White stands out in managing to attract tens of thousands of German tourists to Donegal yearly on coach tours through the midst of the recession we find ourselves in.Who is your favourite Donegal sportsperson of all time?As part of Team Delta (Joe Devenney, Eoin Fogarty Ivan Irwin & myself) I was privileged to have the honour of being chosen to provide safety cover for Anne Marie Ward on her epic battle over 19 hours to become the first Irish woman to swim the North Channel from the Antrim Coast to Scotland. Her steely unwavering determination focus and solitary will against everything the most unforgiving sea in the world could throw at her puts her on the pedestal in my view.What is your favourite Donegal restaurant?Sargasso impresses me with its splendid Donegal Seafood creations and decent wine list at affordable pricing for that special treat and for a nice family Sunday evening you won’t beat Mickey Doherty’s Singing Pub in Downings for a tasty Seafood Basket & a pint.Donegal’s golden eagles or basking sharks?As a diver I have to go with the serene beauty of the basking shark gliding effortlessly off Fanad head but big respect to Lorcan and his team for Trojan work in bringing the Golden eagle back to Glenveagh.Your nomination for Donegal’s most stylish person?Maybe I am biased but I though Jason Black modelled in dashing style the finest in Outdoor Clothing & Footwear on his recent summit of Mont Blanc the highest summit in Western Europe in training for a shot at Everest and Wet n Wild were very appreciative of Jason who bought all his Clothing Footwear and Equipment for the trip at Wet n Wild!What is your favourite Donegal saying or expression?A description recounted after a night out when none of Team Delta were feeling particularly great of a man “in the horrors of drink” as being “as dry as a mouse in a bag of flour”What is your favourite Donegal food?Snorkel diver caught Mulroy Bay scallops pan fried with wee bit of Chilli & LemonIs there anything that really annoys you about Donegal or its people?Persistent rubbish tipping in Donegal beauty spots be it fast food wrappers on the L Salt road, nappies on Burtonport Railway between Muckish and Falcaragh or most recently I saw a box of wine bottles left in a cardboard box in a gateway on a country lane- We have the nicest county in Ireland and a few lazy people disrespect their beautiful county and ruin it for everyone!If you had a million euro to spend on improving something in Donegal, what would it be?A sacrificial pathway from car park to foot of Errigal with a tastefully constructed (stone built & thatched) tea room showers and craft shop adjacent to Errigal would probably take 15 people off the dole and definitely exponentially expand the usage of one of Donegal’s greatest assets. You can shower and have a mug of hot tea and a scone after climbing Croagh Patrick Ben Nevis and Carrantooghill so why not Errigal?MY DONEGAL WITH WET AND WILD OUTDOOR SHOP OWNER GUS O’DRISCOLL was last modified: September 25th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:gus o’driscollMY DONEGALWet n Wildlast_img

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