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Published: February 24th 2005
As seen from a bus...
I'd wanted to wait until I could upload all my photos before posting an update on my Galway trip, but the digital photography gods seem to have it in for me. I finally managed to upload all my digital pics onto my roommate Oscar's laptop-- yay for nice roommates!--but somehow, I only managed to burn ONE of them to CD before merrily heading into campus. Only when I inserted the CD into the computer lab computer did I realize my folly. By that point, my roommate and his laptop were elsewhere. So, for now, the ONE picture I've added on a previous entry will have to suffice, as well as a vow to add more later.
As for my Galway trip, as the pictures shall soon show you, it was loads of fun! There were ten of us (two Americans, two Germans, one French, and five Dutch), and we left on Friday evening after we were done with classes. We traveled by bus, and arrived in Galway some time around 7:30 or 8PM. Upon arrival, we dumped our belongings at our hostel (we stayed in a very nice place called the Kinlay House, right by Eyre Square, the main square)
The International Crowd
The gaggle of Dutch, German, and American students I went with to Galway all hanging out in the Kinlay Hostel.
and traversed the city center for food. Satisfying this need at a fast-food/deli place called Supermac's, we then hung out and chatted in the hostel reception area where there were loads of tables and chairs for such a purpose. The hostel was really cool, with a number of internationals, most of whom were around my age. We all had bunk beds, of course, but we were fortunate enough to have private rooms-- a room of four beds for the girls, and a room of six beds for the guys. So, after our fun at the hostel, we went out on the town to look for more trouble.
The city was very nice and quite lively, with pubs, clubs, and shops lining a few pedestrian-only avenues (as well as the automobile-driven ones). People were out everywhere, and it was fun to be amid all that bustle! We ended up splitting up for the night (several wanted to go to a night club while others of us didn't feel like paying cover charges), and I went with Chris (Dutch) and Jeff (American) to a place called The Living Room where we hung out for the night and talked life and a
Hanging out at the Hostel
Audrey (French) and Jeff (American) at the Kinlay Hostel.
The next day everyone was up early for the small breakfast the hostel provided, and we went out to tour the town, following a walking tour one of the guidebooks provided. We saw a number of sights that morning: the Cathedral of Our Lady (a cathedral built all out of Irish stone--yes, some of which was green), the church of St. Nicholas, the town market, a house once lived in by James Joyce, numerous shops, an aquarium, and more! We had a lunch of fish and chips, which was deliciously greasy, at a place full of atmosphere called McDonagh's, and then for dinner that night we made on our own pasta salad at the hostel. Making dinner was quite an adventure-- try taking cooking advice from so many different nationalities with so many different ways of doing things! Still, it was quite fun!
That night, we went out again, first everyone to The Living Room and then a few to a club called Cuba. A number of us were really bushed from a long day of walking, though, so we hit the sack early and let the others go clubbing (and probably felt better the next
Chris and Bart (L-R) hanging out at the hostel.
morning for it). Sunday morning was another early morning, and a little rainy, but we headed for the Aran Islands anyway (about a 50 minute bus ride and 40 minute ferry ride away). The Aran Islands are off the Galway County coast and are criss-crossed with stone fences built (without the handiness of cement-- only piled!) up to 4,000 years ago (or so our tour guide said). We were on Inishmore, the biggest of the three limestone islands. There we were able to marvel at the natural beauty of the Irish landscape as well as some historical sites-- namely, Dún Aenghus, an old fort/ceremonial site (they don't know which) that is thousands of years old, and the Seven Churches, a set of medieval church buildings that has remained despite time and the elements. Hopefully, pictures will come of this soon!
With that part of the journey over (it took all of Sunday), we hopped back on the ferry, bus, and ran for another bus, and finally made it back to Limerick. Phew-- what a trip!
As for this week, I've tried out a few clubs and societies including the Christian Union, the Softball Club, the Drama Society, the
Cathedral of Our Lady Assumed Into Heaven and St. Nicholas, Galway City
The Galway City cathedral, made of Galway limestone and Connemara marble.
International Society, and the UL Choir. All were fun, but for now, I think I'll stick to the CU, the International Society, the choir, and a volunteer organization I'll be starting up with this coming week, if all goes well. This weekend, I hope to go to Adare (a little village about a 25-minute bus-ride from Limerick) on Sunday and spend some time in Limerick city on Friday and Saturday.
Tonight it is my Hungarian roommate's (Istvan-- I spelled his name wrong earlier) birthday, so Oscar, Cliona, and I are planning an evening of celebration! Can't party too hardy though-- I have a 9AM tomorrow (my Yeats class), a class in which the classmates and lecturer failed to agree on another time to move it to. So, I'm stuck with Friday classes. But, I've decided to drop the European Cinema class that's on Friday afternoons. When else would I get the chance to take Irish Lit from and among Irish folks? So, my class schedule is as follows: Contemporary Irish Literature in English, Yeats/Heaney and the Politics of Irish Identity, Traditional Irish Music and Dance, and Irish Folklore. All of these have been super cool so far, and I
Walking by the River Corrib
A river runs through it... through Galway, at least.
hope they only get cooler!
Okay, so much more is of course going on, including a current addiction to coffee (not because of caffeine but merely because it is a warm substance), but I can get into that later! HOPEFULLY, as I've been saying the last several entries, HOPEFULLY I will finally get some more pictures up soon. Otherwise, I'll keep you posted!
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