Hunting for a picture earlier, it occurred to me that I have thus far neglected to document the trip Kate and I took to Ireland back in February. After quick stops in London and Brussels for the Monki Gras and FOSDEM, we tacked on a quick three day jaunt in Dublin. We’ve both been to Ireland before, but we’d never been with each other. Our original idea was to tour the west and see more of the country, but given the compressed timeframe Dublin was easier to manage.
It was an especially interesting visit for me, because the last time I was in the city – aside from stopovers at the airport – was as a student. One summer in college, I was over for six weeks to take a course at Trinity on Irish history. Unsurprisingly, I loved my time in Dublin. The class, too.
Here are a few of the things Kate and I saw while we were over.
The Trinity campus was as impressive as I remembered, and we were staying at a Westin that was a short walk away.
Turning around, we headed over to see the book of Kells.
Pictures are prohibited of the book itself, but the Old Library you pass through on the way out is at least as impressive. They just don’t make rooms like this anymore.
After the book of Kells, we took a walk down to the Pavilion. It was quiet, almost empty, but the summer I was over it was always packed. A couple of us students would get pints and sit out on the deck to watch cricket played on this field.
I had no idea then and still have no idea now how cricket is played, but sitting outside in the sun watching it, Guinness in hand, while old men yelled obscure cricket taunts at one team or the other was not bad at all.
A short walk from there was the Oscar Wilde memorial, a fitting tribute.
We also visited the Michael Collins memorial, which was important to us as some of Kate’s family fought with him.
The picture’s terrible, but in the other direction, we walked through the Dubhlinn Garden behind Dublin Castle.
The administrative buildings built off the castle end up in this courtyard.
For its part, the castle has been almost subsumed by the city around it.
We made sure to catch some live music as well. Catching Irish acts is always fun, as I grew up on the music. At the same time, it always reminds me of an absent friend.
You are missed, Sean.
No trip to Dublin, of course, is complete without a visit to the Temple Bar.
But while the traditional venues remain fantastic, it’s nice to see craft focused venues springing up. After striking out when one prospective lunch venue was closed, we wandered down one street and ended up at P.Macs. The servers were great, and knew their craft beer.
Overall, it was a great trip, if too short. Look forward to getting back over, and I hope I don’t have to wait as long this time.