We’ve had quite the eventful first week here in Dublin. We spent the greater part of the week getting accustomed to Ireland and oriented to the city…and the rest of the week getting excited for this weekend. That’s right, it’s St. Patrick’s Day weekend, and Dublin plays host to 4 days of events and activities. And what a weekend it’s been so far, not so much because of the Irish (who are generally disinterested in the holiday), but because of all the tourists and attractions.
And now for a brief recap.
On Monday our profs had grand plans for us to visit the Dublin Castle, but as we soon found out, the castle is currently being used as the seat of the European Union, so it’s closed to the public. This meant, however, that we had the rest of the day free so we just explored the city.
Tuesday was our first day of class…which ended up being about 8 minutes of each of our 3 classes so that we could go tour the National Museum of Ireland (it’s specifically an archaeological museum) and the National Gallery (art museum). On Wednesday we (actually) had class in a tiny conference room of our hotel. Lucky were those who scored chairs for our 3 hour/3 classes marathon. For McDowell’s literature class, we ended up leaving the hotel to follow the path one of the characters of The Dubliners and then ended the afternoon with a tour guided by some classmates to see some of Dublin’s many churches and cathedrals (including the Christ Church Cathedral).
Class Thursday included a tour of the Natural History Museum for Dr. Koontz’s class and a chilly outdoor lecture for McDowell’s class in Marrion Square. With our afternoon free many of us went back to the hotel to NAP! Napping is an activity we find we desperately need here.
By 4 in the afternoon everyone is a zombie. So we napped and did homework and I went to pick up a friend from home who just happened to be visiting for her spring break.
Thursday night we went out to O’Donoghues, a pub just a bit up Baggot Street where live music and Guinness and lively company are plenty.
Friday was spent exploring the north side of the river Liffey. We wandered through an area rich in immigrant population and finished our afternoon at the Irish Craft Beer Village. This was a cool event because craft beer is starting to take off in Ireland and this ‘village’ was promoted by the city as a St. Patrick’s Festival event. That and the beer was pretty great too.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day, all! More to come soon, including a video of some live music at O’Donoghues.