THOUSANDS of supporters bid farewell to president-elect Michael D Higgins today as he prepared for a seven year stint in the Aras, leaving some to believe the ageing politician will never be seen alive again.
Letters of goodbye flooded his offices in Dublin over the past three weeks, many from people hoping to get one last reply from the Godfather of Irish Politics.
Meanwhile this afternoon, the current president left the Aras an Uactharain, her home for the last 14 years, ahead of tomorrow’s inauguration.
We caught up with the pasty McAleese earlier this morning, who was still adjusting her eyes to the sunlight.
“I would just like to thank the staff here at the Aras for treating my family so well throughout the years. Without them it would have been a very lonely and unbearable time for us.
“I’m just glad its all over.”
We then asked what she will do with her free time: “I just hope to enjoy the fresh air for a bit and maybe go for a walk on the beach. You don’t appreciate the little things until they are taken away from you.
“I wish Mr. Higgins all the best on his journey.” she added.
However, some critics are not so optimistic about the new presidents longevity.
One man said: “Sure the next time we’ll see that fucker will be at his state funeral. More money gone down the drain. Why couldn’t they have picked someone younger? The country is gone to shit!”
The Higgins family are due to move into Aras an Uactharain tomorrow evening and will hopefully emerge alive in 2018. He will be sorely missed.