In response to the readers who asked about meeting local Irish in places other than pubs, Brian O'Shea sent me additional comments:
"The fellow that asked about being an alcoholic and not wanting to go into the pubs.
He could find a cup of tea, the Irish drink 4 or 5 cups of tea a day, he could ask where to get a proper cup of tea, and be directed to a nice cafe where more often than not he can ask questions. A lot of the pubs will also be restaurants, They won't have the "feel" of a bar room. If he felt pressured he could tell the person he was a "Pioneer" thats a person who doesn't drink http://www.pioneerassociation.ie/ . "