Baile Átha Cliath (Dublin)

The first weekend of December I flew to Dublin with some friends who are in London with the Colgate program. We flew out of Gatwick which meant we had to find a way to get there first, which would in our case would be easybus. No problem, right? Except, despite being super lucky and catching the right District line train at the exact right time, I missed the bus. I was running in the rain towards the bus stop and I could see the bus, and then it drove away. So I thought I could catch the next bus, but the next bus would have been too late, so I high-tailed it over to Victoria station to take the Gatwick express instead. It wasn’t that late at night, but the airport was super empty, which might have been a good thing because it took me forever to get through the fancy thingamabobs that look at your eyes because it couldn’t read through my glasses.

Interesting mural in our hostel

We stayed at a hostel right next to the Christ Church Cathedral aka right in the middle of the city. The first morning we went on a walking tour that took us to the Dublin Castle and City Hall, with a lot of accompanying historical information all about the Irish spirit and yadayada. Our guide was super nice and she despite the cold cold cold she kept everyone entertained and even spoke a little Irish too. Interesting fact, in an effort to make Irish more familiar to new generations new words have been introduced sounds more like English. Or something like that.

The oldest surviving bit of Dublin Castle, Record Tower c. 1228

The garden at Dublin Castle, celtic knot in the grass, and a wall built to hide the slums from some queen or the other

We also went on a pub crawl, no, not a literary pub crawl, just a regular old pub crawl. Crazies thing happened. There was a girl there that I knew! One of the American girls who’s on the rugby team was also in Dublin that weekend, and at the same pub crawl. We even played a game of beer pong against her and her friends, Colgate vs Bryn Mawr. We won, of course.

Traditional music at a pub

The next day we went to check out the Liffey Bridge, formerly the Wellington Bridge, named after the Duke of Wellington, but also nicknamed the Ha’penny Bridge because of the half penny toll that people had to pay to cross it. Then to the National Leprechaun Museum, which was sort of lame… Not much of a museum, more of an “experience.” The two little kids who were the only one there besides us, got scared halfway through because it was dark…. And because I’m a nerd, while my friends went to the Guinness Storehouse tour, I went to the Chester Beatty Library. Chester Beatty was American, but he collected lots of amazing books (including some Egyptian love poems) from all over the world and all of it is on display at this library.

Funny story. Our tour guide told us about Darky Kelly who was burned as a witch and supposedly haunts a certain ally near Dublin Castle. And as it happens I found myself on the very stairs that led to the ally as I was going back to the hostel from the Library. I had to try really hard not to be spooked.

The River Liffey

Ha'Penny Bridge

Sitting in a giant's chair at the Leprechaun Museum

One thing I realized, I really love the Irish countryside. Dublin is a really nice city, but I wish we were able to g out of the city for a bit.

A picture of Dingle Penninsula from my visit to Ireland in 2007