Sunday, July 28, 2013

Samuel Beckett Bridge

On our third day in Dublin, Timmy and I went to visit the Famine Ship (post to come), on our way there we stopped to admire the Samuel Beckett Bridge which is shaped like a harp.

The bridge can swing open when any ships need to pass through; I believe that has only been used a couple times. You can view a video of the bridge opening here. I wish that we had visited the bridge at sunrise or sunset, because judging by this photo it looks even more beautiful then.

You can view all the blog entries I write about our Dublin vacation by clicking here.

I call the building on the far left R2D2.

This is the mechanics for a different bridge near the Samuel Beckett bridge.

The temperture in Dublin usually only gets up to the mid-60s (Fahrenheit), so, the locals were really enjoying the weather being in the mid-70s while we were there; it was the hottest it has been there in seven years. Most of the guys swimming were in their underwear or regular shorts.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Turks Head Bar

At the end of our second day in Dublin, Timmy and I went to the Turks Head Bar for dinner and drinks. Turks Head is built into the hotel we stayed at, The Paramount.

I ordered a drink there because it was the cocktail of the week, and I was pleasantly surprised that it tasted just like a drink I used to order in my hometown. Timmy ordered the fish and chips, and I just ordered a bowl of chips. I loved how they presented the chips on Timmy's plate.

You can view all the blog entries I write about our Dublin vacation by clicking here. To see just my posts on food in Dublin, you can click here.

Hippos, elephants, oh my! (Dublin Zoo)

These photos are also from our second day in Dublin. After visiting the Kilmainham Gaol, and going to lunch at La Dolce Vita, we headed over to the Dublin Zoo.

Unfortunately in our excitement we forgot to put on suntan lotion before we left out that day, so, we ended up sunburnt quite badly. I am against the very idea of tanning, so, I always try to wear high SPF sunscreen whenever I will be outside for extended periods of time. For that reason, I have really only been "legitimately" sunburnt twice in my life (counting this time), therefore I have not developed a stomach for the disgusting skin peeling that happens afterwards. Ugh.

The sun was so intense the two weeks that we were in Dublin that it felt ten degrees hotter every day than the Weather Channel said it was. I reallyyy regretted the leggings and boots that I wore our second day in Dublin and I did not make the mistake of wearing anything on my legs again! Since I wasn't prepared for how much hotter it would feel than the actual temperature, I didn't have much appropriate clothes to pick from, so, you'll notice that I'm wearing one of three shirts in almost all the vacation photos I share, and the same pair of shorts.

"Hey Jeffrey! Jeffrey! Wait up! I have something to tell you!"


"Okay, bye."

You can view all the blog entries I write about our Dublin vacation by clicking here.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Lunch at La Dolce Vita in Dublin

After visiting the Kilmainham Gaol, Timmy and I went to La Dolce Vita for lunch. We got the two course meal. Below are pictures of our appetizers. Our main dishes were good (Timmy had Penne Arabiatta and I had Pizza Margherita), however, presentation-wise they weren't really special enough for me to take a photo of; the appetizers (Timmy's was the minestrone soup, and mine was garlic cheese bread) on the other hand were adorable, in large part to their garnishes.

You can view all the blog entries I write about our Dublin vacation by clicking here. To see just my posts on food in Dublin (currently just this post, more to be added later), you can click here.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Kilmainham Gaol

Timmy and I went to the Kilmainham Gaol on our second day in Dublin. Kilmainham Gaol is a prison that was built in 1796 and in operation as a prison until 1924. It was the home to many political prisoners during the Irish War of Independence. You can read more about the prison's history here.

You can view all the blog entries I write about our Dublin vacation by clicking here.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Our first day in Dublin and the Christ Church Cathedral

Now that Timmy and I are back from our two week Dublin vacation (we got back yesterday), you can expect to see a lot of vacation photo posts. The first six days of the trip we used our Dublin Passes, so, we did a lot of indoor touristy stuff, so, I imagine the photos will be quite boring to most of you; however, after the first six days we did a lot of fun outdoor stuff, and I think the photos are incredible, so, hopefully those photos will be more interesting.

We left for our trip on Saturday, July 6th at 4:00 pm and arrived in Dublin on Sunday, July 7th around 5:00 am. The flight was only about seven hours, however, Dublin is six hours ahead of Chicago. You can view my post about our flight here. Going through Irish customs was amazing; it was basically a quick look at our passport, a smile, and an "Enjoy your holiday." I was a little worried about how long it would take as when I visited Vancouver (Canada) about a decade ago, it took a couple hours to get through customs; since passports were not required for US citizens visiting Canada then, that may have been why it took so long (I imagine passports speed up the process since background checks have already been done).

Anyway, by the time we got through customs, found our luggage, collected our Dublin passes, took a bus into Dublin, and a short walk from the bus, we arrived at our hotel, The Paramount, around 7:00 am. Check-in time at our hotel wasn't until 2:00 or 3:00 pm, so, we were quite early. Before our trip I e-mailed our hotel asking if we could check in early (around noon was my estimate), and they said they couldn't guarantee it because the hotel was full and guests had until noon to check out; additionally, they wanted to be able to put us in the back of the hotel since it is quieter and we would be staying two weeks. They advised us that we could drop off our luggage, so, that is what we were planning to do. When we got to the hotel though, the desk clerk said she could give us a room at the front of the hotel, which is a bit noisier, if we didn't want to wait for the other room; she said that if at anytime in our trip we decided it was too noisy, we could move rooms, so, we took her up on the offer. They let us check in 7-8 hours early for no extra charge! The room did end up being really noisy on the weekend, however, I don't think any of the other rooms would have been that different since the hotel is in the Temple Bar area; you can view a video of the noise in the area on a weekend here.

Originally Timmy and I were wanting to go to the GAA Leinster Hurling Finals the first day we were there, however, we were not expecting to be able to check in so early, and we didn't think to take a nap when we were able to; since we didn't sleep on the flight, we were exhausted after breakfast at Eddie Rockets, and a visit to Dublina, and Christ Church Cathedral.

Eddie Rockets was okay, nothing really spectacular; the burgers were decent, not great, the milkshakes were great but how can you screw up a milkshake? Dublina didn't allow photographs, so, I don't have any. I am not really a museum fan, so, it wasn't highly interesting to me, but it was nice to learn more about Dublin's past. I love looking at elaborate churches, even though the hypocrisy of it is ridiculous, so, I enjoyed the visit to Christ Church more.

The first day we also made sure to stop at Queen of Tarts, as it was one of the things I was most looking forward to about Dublin (a bit silly, I know); we went there several times on our trip. For lunch/supper we stopped at DiFontaine's Pizzeria; we went there many times on our trip for the €5 slice+pop (about $6.50) as it was right around the corner and delicious. After that, Timmy and I went back to the hotel and crashed quite early.

Sorry about the excessive amount of information; I wanted to write everything down so I won't forget any details later.

Below are the photos from our first day in Dublin. You can view all the blog entries I write about our Dublin vacation by clicking here.

Timmy after I asked him to do a happy-to-be-in-Dublin dance or pose.

Timmy standing in front of our hotel.

Photos from the pedestrian bridge connecting Dublina and Christ Church.

Photos from inside Christ Church.

I forgot to take photos of the outside of Christ Church that day since we entered it through Dublina, so, here are two photos I took a couple days later. It is so huge that not even two photos shows it all.