Two-way traffic in Leinster House today. A couple of brand new TDs arriving in to get their first viewing of their new home. They were accompanied by their families and all had a happy, brimful of enthusiasm, sense about them.
There was a sadder procession going the other way. I met five or six of those who lost their seats, arriving in the Dail to collect their belongings. They were all putting a brave face on it, being philosophical. But you knew that deep down for each of them, it really hurt. The vast majority of people who are in politics are innately likeable and not to have that likeability validated is a blow for them.
To be sure, it's a cruel game. Losing your seat is horrible, no matter who you are, no matter what you stand for. The reasons they have lost out have little to do with them - they suffer because of a mood-shift or antipathy to their party's policies or whatever - but you know that there is still a powerful feeling of rejection.
Some 30 TDs lost their seats this time round. There are very very few of them about whom you'd say, good riddance.