Thursday, July 30, 2009

Number 6 / Irish Blood English Heart

It takes like barely any time to get to Ireland. We sat down on the plane and I barely had time to get Madison (my iPod) warmed up before it was “put away your tray tables please”. Convenient, yes, but I do like a slightly longer flight - gives you time to write something substantial and listen to an album.

Dublin was cloudy when we landed. And windy which irritated me since Vic and I had, only a few days earlier, argued about wind in cities. The second we got out the airport we were hit with our first wave of Irish friendliness when enquiring which bus to catch.

Can I just say now that I need to get rich? Our premier room was soooo nice! The beds were like sleeping on air! PLUS we got access to this suite on the seventh floor which had a balcony and free cookies! Um, squee!

The first day was a bit whirlwind-ish. And by lunchtime we were both full-on knackered. A nice lady nearly speared Vic on the end of her nails whilst she elaborately explained to Vic how to get to Dublin Castle and I chomped on my bagel. Dublin Castle was way more interesting than it sounds. It’s still used so it’s fairly nifty inside. Plus real famous people have stayed there, like Queen Victoria.

But what fascinated/terrified me was the Chandeliers. In every room. Big, heavy, glittering chandeliers. Mark will understand why these unsettled me so much.

After this was St. Patrick’s Cathedral but frankly we were sleepwalking by this point. A nice Kopparberg and some lasagne in a typical Irish pub (and a diet red bull for Vic) gave us a second wind and we wandered down to the cinema to watch The Proposal (it’s awesome! Watch it!).

Tuesday was the only full day. We walked all the way to Phoenix Park (about 4 miles?). And I was on full boy-spotting form as we wandered round the city. As expected, Dublin had way way more cute boys than Marseille. I counted 30 top-class cuties in only two and a half days!

We stopped in a bar near our hotel for lunch and Vic struggled to a) get the barman to understand her and b) explain what an archers and lemonade was. Once again I was struck by just how friendly the Irish are. A nice dude at the bar helped Vic out and the barman was very sweet about the whole thing.

The Temple Bar is legendary in Dublin. So it seemed fitting to do number 6 (drink a pint of Guinness in Ireland) there. The barman was super nice and the atmosphere was just… right. Tourists and Dubliners all happily co-existing in a merry state. As far as bars go, it may be one of the best I’ve ever been in.

Then an American started hitting on Vic and it was clearly time to go :)
The last day and it was clearly time to do something every tourist is required to whilst in Dublin - go see how Guinness is made! It's not easy to find the Guinness Storehouse but certainly well worth the walk. In fact, the entire experience was surprisingly interesting. The Storehouse is super modernised and has a very Irish charm about it.

But the highlight of the storehouse has to be the gravity bar on the seventh floor. Not only does it offer the best view of Dublin, but you get a complimentary drink. It was 11:30 am when we made it up there and I was really in no mood for drinking. So I totally copped out and got a soft drink. Vic for her part did get a Guinness but only drank the top. Wuss.

Dublin is lovely. I'd recommend it to anyone. Packed with tourist-y things to do plus bars, cinemas, bars, theatres, bars, the academy, bars, cute boys, bars and shops. Oh and bars. Indefinitely what I enjoyed the most though was the hospitality. People were only too happy to help wherever we went, from barmen to hotel staff to bus drivers and just randoms on the street. I've never felt so welcome away from home. And every single bar we walked into felt so comfortable and welcoming.
Amazing really.

1 comment:

VAI2008 said...

At least I got one!!! Plus, that top bit meant I drank a whoooolllleee pint of the stuff!! (Which is repulsive!!! Except the foam, that's fun)