I am as Irish as a Potato is wide

Welcome to Part #1 of my vacation!  This was an UNREAL trip that could not fit into one blog entry.  Sorry folks, you are getting two.  By “folks”, I mean the handful of people who even know about this blog.

The title of this blog comes from Tom.  He decided that, in Ireland, he would speak with an Irish accent and this was one of the many things that he said during our time there.  It makes zero sense but that is why I married this man:  the utter chaos and randomness that comes from his mouth….and most the time in an accent.

We (Chuck, Kiley, Tom and myself) had no idea what to expect from this trip and everything we experienced was new.  We could not have asked for better travel buddies.  Traveling international can be stressful and you really need a chill couple who like each other enough to get through the frustrating parts of it all.

Dublin, Ireland

We arrived in Dublin at 11 AM local time.  None of us slept a lot on the flight and felt like zombies when we got there.  We poured into a cab and proceeded to give the cab driver instructions to the flat we were staying in.  So right out the gate – the cab driver gets a D- for knowing the city he lives and drives a cab in.  After we got out of the cab, Tom tipped him.  He seemed surprised and later we realized you don’t tip in Ireland.

After we showered, we realized that we needed to stay up in order to prevent the jet lag.  First bar we wandered into was Badbobs.  This bar was cool… during the day.  One of the many things we learned that most bars are so much cooler during the day.  Once 9 PM hits they all become clubs.

We ordered a Guinness and cheers to the start of our trip!  After that we kind of bar hopped to different places.  Some great some kind of dumb….

 

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The Temple Bar

This is obviously a tourist attraction but a cool one at that.  The outside of the building is beautifully decorated.  Deep Red with beautiful, multicolored flowers.  When we got in it was packed.  However, there are so many nooks and other rooms in this place, we ended up getting an amazing spot on the patio.  It was here, I got my first Smithwicks Red Ale.  LOVE.  Favorite beer of the trip.

 

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The International

Really neat bar.  There was a comedy club upstairs but we had decided to pass on that.  They also had a Chicago Cubs sticker in here, which at this point, I went crazy over.  They had great beers there as well and all around good conversation.

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O’Donoghues

I was told to come here by a friend.  She got engaged here and it is one of the oldest bars in Dublin.  It was a great spot.  It’s one of those old establishments that has very small entrances and kind of a small gross bathroom.  I’m not someone that gets grossed out by that.  I’ve been to New Orleans….some of the bars there basically have a hole in the floor.  As a woman, you know how to hover.  Outside of that though, it was very neat and they had some great cheap beers.  It was here I had my first Irish coffee.  The jet lag was starting to creep in.

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(Do not spill beer on yourself in front of your friends)

Darkey Kellys

We kept getting this name wrong.  We walked into here, randomly, after we went back to the flat and got jackets.  It got chilly.  It was a bar that was attached to a hotel.  What was neat was that they had a cover band that kept playing songs by Eminem.  We had been drinking enough at this point where we thought this was the best.  I’m pretty sure Chuck recorded it at one point which is hilarious to think about now.  This would be like some Irish guy coming over here and recording some shitty cover band at one of our bars.

The rest of the night was kind of a blur.  We went to some places that were like “eh”.  Not really worth mentioning here but do know that we took in A LOT our first night.

Day 2 in Dublin started off a little slow.  We stayed up super late and figured out it’s because the sun goes down at like 10 PM.  Lesson learned.

After we showered, we were out the door and headed to Trinity College.  I, personally, wanted to see the library.  I’ve seen pictures and always have wanted to see that with my own eyes.

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Trinity College

This was amazing.  I loved all of the status.  I tried to look at some of the books closely but they had a lot of it roped off which was kind of a bummer.  When you are in a place like this you can’t help but think of all of the people who have been standing where you are standing.  So surreal.

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The Book of Kells was on display there.  It was really neat to see how they made colored ink back then and how these books were constructed.  This book was made 561 and has been in Dublin since 1653.  It’s so hard to believe how much this book as survived.

After leaving Trinity College, we stumbled onto a really neat rooftop bar called Lillie Bordello.  Tom and I got beers but Chuck and Kiley got fancy with it and got some of their signature cocktails.  The outside seating area was kind of hilariously decorated.  Plastic flowers, purple wallpaper and a lot of boob pictures up.  Somehow, even though it was so cheaply decorated, it was still very charming.

The Hairy Lemon

After walking around for what seemed like years, we stopped into the Hairy Lemon.  This was a cool bar!  This bar also had so many rooms and cute little areas to sit.

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(I love this picture from O’Sheas.  I was trying to take a pic of the sign and Tom photobombed me)

The Brazen Head / O’Sheas

These two bars were right across the street from each other.  It is somewhat hilarious that the two best places happened to be located 2 blocks away from our Airbnb.  It ended up being the perfect way to wrap up a fun weekend in Dublin.

The Brazen Head had a great patio area and live band.  It is the oldest bar in Dublin.  It does, however, close early.  So we walked right across the street to O’Sheas where we stayed for the night.  WHAT A FUN PLACE!  It was packed wall to wall with people all over the age of 70.  They were drinking, dancing and having a blast.  While waiting for a beer, an 80 yr old man walked up to me, kissed my hand and proceeded to dance with me.  After seeing Tom standing on the side with my beer, we walked over to him and I introduced my new husband.  He quickly realized we had American accents and goes “What is the deal with the orange president you have?  What a fool!”.  Tom then quickly tried to explain the Electoral College and the popular vote to smooth things over.

The rest of the night we spent telling jokes and listening to Tom try to sound like an Irishman.  Dublin is a great city and will be a place I visit again.

Galway Ireland

Waking up the next morning was rough.  We had to pack up, get to the airport and rent a car to drive to Western Ireland.  There wasn’t enough coffee in the world to make this drive a drive where I would be awake the whole time.

We all pour into a cab and right away, we get more Trump comments from the cab driver.  We get it Ireland, you are not a fan of Trump.  I mean, we aren’t either.

After dealing with the world’s most chatty car rental employee, we were off to Galway.  I passed out immediately.  I have this huge issue with getting carsick and the only way to deal with it is to close my eyes and go to sleep.  I woke up as we passed a sign for Galway just as Tom was really getting into his Irish accent routine.

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We get into the Hostel and start to walk around the city a bit.  I love it.  We take a nice long walk by the water and then decided we were ready for our first Galway beer.  The Salt House was a place I had on my list, and as destiny had it…..was one of the first places we saw on our walk back into the town.

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The Salt House

This is your classic Ireland bar.  When you think of an Irish bar this is what you envision.  Beers wall to wall which a band that is sitting on a table playing music.  They had a Red Ale they made there that was amazing.

While we were there, I heard from my 2nd cousin Jailyn, who was in Ireland on a study abroad trip.  We just had to meet up!  Tom and I met at her hostel and we headed over to the Kings Head.  That was another bar on the list I had made.  I’m glad that we went but it obviously seemed like another touristy bar.

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The D’ail Bar

We decided we wanted to head to a more divey type place and found The D’ail Bar.  They had a great band that just happened to play a song by a band that Chuck knows pretty well.  Galway was a place I wish I had one more day in but very fun stop.

Cliffs of Moher

The next morning we all woke up very excited to see the Cliffs of Moher.  However, I realized I may have my first hangover of the trip.  Little too much fun in Galway!  On the way to the Cliffs, we stopped by Dunguaire Castle.  Neat little castle on the water.  We saw that in the 40s a woman bought it and lived in it.  We all thought that was somewhat hilarious to buy a castle and live it for the rest of your life.

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We also randomly got out of the car at an overlook (Aillwee Cave) where I took a picture of Tom trying to climb around in areas he was not supposed to.

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Finally, we got to the Cliffs of Moher.  I don’t know how to describe this other than this was one of the most beautiful places my eyes have ever seen.  We walked about 5 miles down the coast and every part of it was amazing.   One thing that surprised me was how afraid Tom was when I would get close to the edge.  This place was not roped off.  There was just drop downs everywhere.  We walked by so many people that were just laying inches from the edge and taking selfies.

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My phone did not work the whole time while we were away and I started thinking at this point how freeing it is to be there, in the middle of nowhere, off the grid.  I had zero worries there and it was so cathartic.  Feeling the ocean air on my face, watching the birds fly and clouds move over the water; I didn’t want to ever leave.

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We wrapped up the day by checking into an Airbnb in Ennis.  It was late and we started our first dice game of the trip.  Grabbing beers at the store and rolling dice ended up being quite the staple of our nights away.  After going out to so many bars, it was nice to have a chill night in to regroup.  Although, at 11:59 PM Tom and Chuck ran out to see if they could get more beer.

The next day we had our flight to Norway.  Our time in Ireland, though, was amazing.  I do not have any regrets about any of the things we saw.  I feel like we really crammed a lot into our trip there and am impressed with everything we did.  At this point, I thought it was going to be hard to top Ireland….but I had no idea what I was in for.

 

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