Sorry for your troubles with the van in Ireland. Next time you're over in Dublin keep this in mind : There is a rumour floating - not sure how true, but seemingly Dublin during the week has a Female:Male ratio of 7:1 dropping to 5:1 at the weekends !
About the van - just a thought - I don't think it wasn't the colour orange or unionist conotations that done it. Fairs attract their more than fair share of 'gypsies' (inverted comma's for a reason as there are other names used for who I mean..) they nearly always drive vans and with UK plates - dead ringer I'm afraid...
As for me suggetsing where to go if you do come back, and I hope you do, I'm afraid I can't help ye there - I'm married !!
(Though I could always ask the wife if she know's of anybody interesting....)