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October 19th 2018
Published: October 28th 2018
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Friday October 19 - After breakfast, we headed out to Belfast and arrived by 11:30am. It’s only 90 minutes away by highway. We parked in the apartment complex where we’d be staying, and walked into town from there, which took about 40 minutes. Belfast has a complex and somewhat violent recent past (think Bloody Sunday, where 14 unarmed civil rights protesters were shot by the British Army), but I was surprised at how many murals painted walls of buildings we passed by, alluding to not forgetting what had happened. It did not feel like a city at peace.

We walked around downtown during the day, then took a free tour of city hall that happened to start when we arrived at 3pm. Next we headed over to a nearby mall to look at the building, discovered there was a Five Guys, and had our main food for the day. Maybe for the next few days. We ate far too much - double burgers, fries, milkshakes, and of course some peanuts. Oh man, I have not been that full since last time I was in the states probably. So good and yet so bad. From there we walked back to our airbnb, checked in, and collapsed into diabetic-like comas. Luckily our hosts had dinner plans, so they were not there to see us as lazy slovenly pigs.

Saturday October 20 - We helped ourselves to a continental breakfast in the morning, despite my stance that we may never need food again after the previous night. We said goodbye, packed up the car, and headed out to the Titanic Belfast museum. The Titanic was built in Belfast, and the museum is built on the site where it was built. The museum is well-done, and we enjoyed our four hours there. There are a lot of sound and media displays, and there is even a ride like you’re in Disney at one point! Outside, you can also visit the SS Nomadic, the only ship left from the White Star line. It was a good day.

From the museum, we stopped at Tesco for gas and snacks and then headed to the city airport. All of those things are remarkably close to one another. Dropping off the car was easy, and from there we could walk into the airport. We spent forever trying to check-in to KLM’s check-in machine only to discover when we dropped our bag that we needn’t have done it. What a time suck. We had our sandwiches and chips for dinner in the airport, I coaxed my now seemingly defunct laptop into working one more time, and then we flew home via Amsterdam. We made it home by 10pm and reunited with the cats once again. It was a happy homecoming, and actually gave us all day Sunday at home, which was something I rarely treat myself to on vacation days.

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