Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Project 365: Day 138 -- Big City, Here We Come! (or Welcome to Dublin)

We left Spiddal early this morning. Spiddal is probably a great little town in the summer, since it's a beach town on Galway Bay. But summer doesn't start for another two months here, so Spiddal is a bit of a ghost town.

We checked the map (not the GPS!) and plotted our route to Dublin. We stopped for a little while in Athlone, thinking we might have lunch and see the castle. Turned out the castle was a disappointment, and Kelly just wanted to get to Dublin. So we snapped a few shots, and headed on our way.

We had been warned not to try to drive in Dublin. Just get to the hotel, park the car, and use public transportation or walk until we are ready to leave Dublin. We completely agree! Problem was, it took us an hour to find the hotel! Many places in Dublin, including our hotel, do not have what we would consider a complete address. The have the street name, but no number. If you are lucky. Our hotel documents didn't even have a street name--just an area that included several blocks! So no using GPS, that's for sure. After driving around in crazy-insane traffic for half an hour, going in circles, we parked the car and walked around for another half hour, before we found the hotel. By that time, you can imagine Kelly was good and irritated. And it was raining again, so we were pretty wet.

But once we got checked in and got the car parked in the hotel lot (another ordeal, since the hotel lot was a couple blocks away and the clerk gave us bad directions again) the room was really nice.

The bed was big and comfy, the linens were soft, and the shower was hot with lots of water pressure! And both the hot and cold water came out of the same faucet in the bathroom! Imagine that!

After Kelly settled down while I took a shower, we headed over to Temple Bar. The traffic in Dublin--auto, bus, motocycle, bicycle, and pedestrian--is overwhelming. I've never been to Manhattan, but I imagine it's similar.

Once we got to Temple Bar, we found a pub and ordered drinks and some steamed mussels. The pub turned out to be a drag (mostly female patrons and too many ferns, if you know what I mean) and the mussels were tough and stringy. So after Kelly finished his Guinness, we left to find another place for dinner.

We decided that Temple Bar is for tourists or students from the nearby university, so we headed back towards the hotel. We found a little pub nearby and had fish and chips. Kelly ordered Jameson Irish Whiskey, and I had wine. We enjoyed our mean, and people-watched. A couple of groups came in to sit at nearby tables, and they were all IT guys, so we played guessing games at to what area of IT each guy was in. Then we headed back to the hotel for a good night's sleep in the big comfy bed.

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