Edit Blog Post
Published: August 13th 2017
The three of us, Wayne, Jean and I, arrived at Dublin's airport about 5 am August 11 after an easy flight from Boston. We were concerned when we tried to call our Airbnb host (who kindly said to call early) and didn't get an answer, but soon we figured out that we had copied down his number incorrectly, so instead of calling him in Ireland, we had been calling someone in Albania. Fortunately, he answered right away when we got his number right, and we took an Uber to the beautiful apartment that we are renting from him near the Merrion Hotel and several government buildings. It has two bedrooms and a big living room/kitchen area, fully equipped. Our only complaint is of a booby-trapped toilet seat that tries to slide off the bowl when you sit on it.
We immediately went to bed and slept until about noon. Then went in search of food, lunch, I guess at this point, although it felt like first thing in the morning to us. We were near lots of convenient places, including Chopped for healthy salads and a Tesco grocery store, so, well stocked, we headed back to the apartment and ate
while looking out our 10-foot-tall windows watching Dublin go by. The most amusing sight was the Viking duck tour, a yellow open-topped duck boat full of tourists wearing Viking hats and randomly screaming Vikng(?) yells as encouraged by their tour guide.
Unfortunately, Jean started to feel ill, so she rested for the remainder of the day. Wayne and I went to the Little Museum of Dublin, which had a few exhibits and a lively historical introduction from guide Andrew. Then walked about a five mile route through St. Stephen's park, St. Patrick's cathedral, Christ Church, the Viking quarter, Dublin Castle (outside), and Dane St to Trinity College. We noted that about every third establishment was a pub, still the center of social life in Ireland. Dublin dates back about a thousand years to Viking settlers, and the roads are commonly winding and narrow, following the old cart paths. There are many beautiful parks, though, with gardens and monuments, especially commemorating those who fought in the 1916 Easter Rising against the British here in Dublin, eventually leading to independence for the Republic of Ireland.
Jean was feeling better on the 12th, so we Ubered to the EPIC Emigration Museum
for a couple of hours learning about the reasons that so many Irish settled in America, Australia, Argentina, and many other parts of the world, mainly (1) the Potato Famine in the 1840s that killed over a million people and sent two million more overseas, (2) British oppression and harsh penal codes deporting even minor criminals, and (3) even today, the lack of jobs.
In the afternoon we did an Irish Food Trail walking tour for some more historical information as well as three Irish food stops: Boxty for three different potato appetizers (potato bread with goat cheese, potato dumplings with a chili sauce, and curly fries potatoes); then main dish at Gallagher's of fish and chips or bangers and mash; then cheesecake and make-your-own Irish coffee at Oscar's. I wouldn't say any of it was our favorite type of food, but the guide was excellent, and we can say we have sampled some local cuisine. We learned of the general opinion of the Irish concerning their weather (miserable, but a convenient conversation topic), the importance of Sunday dinners with the family, of story telling (blatant exaggerations encouraged), music, and, again, the local pub.
Tot: 0.058s; Tpl: 0.016s; cc: 9; qc: 45; dbt: 0.0101s; 1; m:saturn w:www (184.108.40.206); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb