“Chaps, we have the bus, so let’s use it, I say,” said Charlie. “I suggest our first port of call should be Leopardstown . . .”.

Barney’s Bus had just tottered through Tulsk on Sunday at noon when Vinny Fitzpatrick tilted his large head against the window pane and began to nod o(...)

It was Monday morning, the first day of spring, and from the west-facing corner of Beaumont Hospital, Vinny spied a cluster of daffodils enjoying a sprightly dance.

For his mid-morning visit, Vinny Fitzpatrick could see Angie had made an effort. She was sitting up in bed, her auburn locks were untied, and she’d a(...)

Players from both sides react to Everton’s Irish defender Seamus Coleman’s late miss against Swansea at Goodison Park.  Photograph: Paul Ellis/AFP /Getty

From the moment his alarm first pinged at 5.50am on Monday, Vinny Fitzpatrick was in a mood most foul. Was is it the cold shower (he had forgotten to(...)

As dead-eye Dick rolled four bowls in a tight cluster around the jack, Vinny’s frailties were exposed. Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

As play unfolded at a funereal pace, and in a monastic silence broken only by the occasional clink, Vinny Fitzpatrick questioned his sanity. “How did(...)

 A Green Bay Packers fan wears a cheese hat as he supports his favourite team. Photograph:  Joel Auerbach/Getty

On the wee coffee tables flanking the comfy armchairs in his den, Vinny Fitzpatrick carefully placed his cheese board selections. The cheeses acknowl(...)

Vinny made it to Howth harbour but he was forced to take the Dart home. Photograph: David Sleator/The Irish Times

The guy looking back at Vinny Fitzpatrick in the mirror was no longer middle-aged; he was officially old. Not as aged as Methuselah perhaps but defini(...)

Derek O’Connor riding Gurteen to victory at Leopardstown. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

As the lads alighted Barney’s bone-shaker at the gates to Leopardstown on Monday, Vinny Fitzpatrick did his customary head count and identified a post(...)

When I hear that Barry’s Tea ad on the radio, each toot from the toy train prompts a tear, as I think of me Ma and Da, and all they did for me.

Dear Santa, Sorry if I’m a little tardy with my letter. I’m usually on the money with timekeeping, but have been preoccupied with recent events on th(...)

Rush golf club in north county Dublin, where Vinny struggled to find the fairways

Vinny Fitzpatrick always got a big buzz from the year-ending turkey shoot outing of the Soiled and Ancient Golf Society. He loved the scramble format,(...)

Proven master:  Willie Mullins on the gallops at Cheltenham racecourse. Photo:  Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

The deeper he journeyed into the back nine of life, the more Vinny Fitzpatrick preferred a pint that bit earlier of an evening. It was an arrangement (...)