July 3rd and 4th

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July 4th 2011
Published: July 4th 2011
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The past two days have been fun – and exhausting! Quick trivia note of the day: There were once over 4,000 Public Houses (Pubs) in Dublin, and now they’re down to only 800.
Just a quick brief summary…
Sunday, July 3rd
- Visited the Book of Kells at Trinity College, but was more in love with the Long Room
- Walked along the Liffey and took pictures of the different bridges (Ha’penny Bridge and Millennium Bridge were my favorites)
- Rode a bus tour throughout the city (favorite part of the tour was when the bus inexplicably stopped for 10 minutes, and I looked out the window to see our driver having a smoke and talking on his cell phone. Normally this would be okay, but it was only 4 stops into a 24 stop tour!)
- Had lunch at Café Richard (Jill was right – the salmon here is ahhhmazing)
- Visited Dublin Castle
- Enjoyed a Literary Pub Crawl (moreso the pub part than the literary part – kidding!)
Monday, July 4th
- Went to St Patrick’s Cathedral and Christ Church Cathedral
- Visited Guiness and Jameson (we even got cheered on by the bus driver as we carried our Guiness bags off the bus, and walked toward the Jameson distillery)
- Toured Kilmainham Gaol
- Shopped a bit more on Grafton Street
- Attempted to find the Leprechaun Museum – epically failed (apparently the museum is as difficult to find as the magical creatures it houses)
- Went to The Merry Ploughboys for a night of traditional Irish music and dinner
So far, there are so many things I love about Dublin.
1. There is tea at EVERY meal. Seriously – tea after breakfast, tea after lunch, tea after dinner, and tea….just because.
2. The weather – it has been in the mid- to high- 60s and sunny the past few days. I do NOT miss 90 and humid at all.
3. The mixture of new and old, history and culture.
4. Irish Breakfast – bacon, sausage, and tea every morning – YEAH!!
5. The people are so friendly…and they have better accents than us.
6. They did celebrate 4th of July – although it was more of an excuse to hit the pub than anything else. However, hearing a traditional Irish folk band sing the Star Spangled Banner was amusing.
7. Irish Cider – on tap – everywhere.
8. The Hop plants at Guiness were safely contained behind glass.
9. Mom’s face after trying her first Black and Tan (Kim – you better tell Dennis that Mom did it…and even enjoyed it after the first few sips).
10. It’s definitely a more relaxed pace of life around here…not as much rush and stress.
There are also things that I don’t so much love…
1. There are stairs – EVERYWHERE. In theory, this isn’t so bad because at least it’s exercise. However, most ladies rooms that I have found have been on the 2nd floor, which is problematic after 2 pints of cider.
2. Going astray of the buses can only lead to bad things. I have almost seen more than a dozen tourists almost get run down by a bus in the past few days – myself included. I guess the lesson that we have been taught for crossing the streets (look left then right) is a bit difficult to reverse. For those of you Harry Potter fans – I now have a new appreciation of the Night Bus.
Tomorrow we are picking up our rental car and heading toward Waterford…definitely one stop I have been looking forward to is touring the Waterford Crystal factory. We’re also visiting Powerscourt Gardens, woolen mills at Avona, and an Emigrant ship museum. The Southeast portion of Ireland is famous for having the best climate in Ireland – so let’s hope for a sunny day, and no misadventure driving on the right (technically wrong in the USA) side of the road.


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