Skip to main content

Saying Goodbye to the Emerald Isle



Wow, record viewership numbers on that last post.  Apparently I need to publicly consider giving up more often.  Builds the readership!

Alas, I'm not leaving Europe just yet.  I'm also not planning on spending endless amounts of time (and money) drifting from place to place like a rootless playboy -- though it'd be a fun couple of months.  No, I went back and hammered at an itinerary until I ended up getting something into shape that I could live with as my first European trip (of hopefully many) .

This means whirlwind tours through London and Paris -- and I'm taking the eurostar from one to the other so I'm looking forward to that.  Spending a little more time with breathing room in Italy.  A little over week there thanks to surprisingly low hotel prices -- probably because it's super-hot.  Athens was potentially on the docket but I couldn't make a plane flight out of there cost anything in the way of reasonable, so it's Rome to home.

Asia is still a potential before the end of the year for sure, but I need to take a good long look at the numbers, and you know, figure out what I'm gonna do with my life.  That might be good.

***  And now some random ephemera on Dublin

-Dublin loves soft-serve ice cream.  It's available in a ton of places you wouldn't imagine it would be.  Like the independent barbecue restaurant I was at today.

-Dublin is not super-easy to get around in.  The roads still have a medieval layout, it's incredibly easy to get turned around, and the street signs are tiny and attached to buildings -- if they're even there at all.

-It's a city of legal vices.  Multiple gaming establishments (casinos and horse betting) right on the street and obviously plenty of pubs.  I never once got a hint of weed smell though that may just have been chance.

-Most of the people working in the shops aren't Irish.  I read a lot of stuff before coming about all the Europeans working here now and that was no lie.  Tons of accents I pegged as Russian, Croatian, and Polish.  Most of the tourists seemed to be either American(or Canadian) or Italian (maybe they're trying to escape the heat).

In the end I have a certain affection for Dublin.  It's multicultural with a strong sense of self-identity.  I never felt unsafe and I never felt unwanted.  That said, I don't think I'd come back without a good reason.  It's just a little too similar to what I already know.  I mean, their Irish pubs are even copies of our Irish pubs!

I should probably pack up.  I fly to London super-early tomorrow.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Ireland, the Devil, and Me

The Irish have a saying, "May you already be in heaven before the devil finds out your dead."  Our bus driver told us that as he dropped us off back in Dublin after a long day out in Northern Island with a quick ride through Belfast, and up along the northern coast to the Giants Causeway--a span of basalt pillars reaching out into the sea.



Maybe I was expecting too much.  Maybe I've been spoiled by the Grand Canyon.  But I found the Giants Causeway somewhat unimpressive.  It was weird shaped rocks by the sea basically.  I will admit the overall tour was pretty good.  We saw the peace walls still separating the Catholic and Protestant sections of Belfast.  And we got to see a bunch of trees that were apparently used in Game of Thrones.  The weather started bad but ended up prettying itself up quite nicely.  The tour itself was only 50 Euros--probably one of the best tour deals I've ever been on.

Incidentally absolutely no passport checks entering Northe…

(Barely) Made it to Dublin

Well, I made it to Dublin.  Took some doing.  Got a great airfare out of Toronto with the caveat that I needed to take a ten hour layover in St Johns.  So I figured: Bonus, free day in Newfoundland.

St John's is a pretty city filled with nice people.  Smelled like the sea.  And a fair bit of weed. They like to blaze out there.



Went up to Signal Hill, the big central attraction which has a beautiful view of the harbor and the city and has historical significance not just for being a former fortification but the place where Marconi first heard the telltale beeps of the wireless coming across the ocean.  It was a good day even though I was exhausted at the start of it thanks to my overnight at Pearson, but I slept most of the flight out.

They almost didn't let me in to Ireland.  My fantastical dreams of meandering around Europe indefinitely got dashed pretty hard by the customs officer.  Apparently they don't love people who show up with no established exit time or ticket.  …