In my last post, I painted a dreary scene of me alone on a dark night in the most threatening part of Dublin. Let me cheer the scene by describing the next morning. My mother was to arrive in Dublin at 9:00 AM, and I briefly considered trying to meet her at the airport. However, the taxi fare had been 15 Euros on the way to the hotel, and that was over my budget. Therefore, I went for a walk instead, thinking I had plenty of time to waste until she arrived.However, just as I approached the hotel, I got a call on my cell phone from a strange number. I knew it had to be her. I answered it, and a strange man’s voice answered. He asked for me. I said it was me, and waited with baited breath. “Your mother is here waiting for you at the hotel,” he said in a throaty eastern European drawl.
Ok, it really wasn’t that dramatic. The dude just called me to let me know my mom was there. I went inside, and we greeted each other. Then our day of fun began.
After a delicious pastry and coffee/tea stop at a little grocery store across from our hotel, we headed downtown. My mother took in the sights, relishing the feel and aura of the history that palpitates through Europe. I, on the hand, was excited about all the cute Irish men and their wonderful accents.
Regardless, we hadn’t really done any research on what Dublin has to offer, so we were at a bit of a loss when trying to determine where to go. Therefore, we decided to go on a free walking tour of the city. It was a bit of a trek to get there, so we managed to see a lot of the sights before actually knowing what they were.
When we did arrive, the tour began, and it was at least a half hour before we even moved from the starting spot. The tour guide was way too into monologuing instead of walking. Finally though, we made it to the castle, which is more of a modern building with one wall that still looks kind of old. It was closed off because the EU is holding their meetings and stuff there, but we still got the gist.
After that, we walked to a small garden area behind the castle. This is when we decided to end the tour and go our own way. It was simply too boring to follow, and my mom was falling asleep because of her long and extensive travels the night before. We stopped and got hot chocolate at the Castle Library, and then headed on over to St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
We had originally planned to enter the cathedral merely for the purposes of sightseeing. However, as we approached the door, we saw that it was 5.50 Euro to get in. Not to be cheap, but that sort of thing adds up after a while, especially since there were two of us. All was lost. However, a loophole soon emerged that we could not possibly turn down.
The church was holding their Evensong mass in just a mere 15 minutes. By attending the short choral mass, we were able to get into the church for free and even have time to look around. That’s called win right there.
After the service, my mom was getting tired out. She couldn’t go any longer, so she headed home on a bus. I stayed in the city for a couple more hours, walking to the famous Temple Bar and scoping out the scene.
Our day concluded with an unfortunate realization – there were no dinner places around our hotel. We were forced into getting greasy fast food from the little place next door. This turned out to be great though, as the food was surprisingly filling, delicious, and good quality.
Overall, I was not as blown away by Dublin as I thought I would be. Sure, I missed seeing some important things like the Guinness Brewhouse and the Jameson Factory and whatnot. However, I just don’t think it has the power and draw of other cities I have been to. It’s kind of small, and seems to have more modernity than I like. All in all, it’s a nice place, but the Irish countryside is where it’s at.