Onto the Republic

Trip Start Sep 11, 2008
Trip End Dec 12, 2008

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Where I stayed

Flag of Ireland  , County Dublin,
Wednesday, October 8, 2008

As planned, Ann and I had dinner together in Belfast on Tuesday night, but ended up in a Thai restaurant. We then went  to the 'Empire' for some free jazz music and a beer, but when the band hadn't started playing at 11pm, we decided to call it a night. I had a lazy morning on Wednesday, headed to the train station, and arrived in Dublin late afternoon. As I got off the tram, some Dubliner started talking to me, and kept warning me about thiefs and pickpockets in the city, so much so that I couldn't tell whether he was being nice or about to rob me himself! But nothing happened in the end :)

After checking into my hostel, I walked around for a bit and got some food at the grocery store. I just took it easy that night, had some pasta and did my laundry - I couldn't believe it though...it cost me 8 euros, which happens to be the best deal in Dublin! Ridiculously overpriced, but it had to be done. I met an Aussie girl named Anna, and we decided to do a walking tour together the next morning. We met after breakfast and were joined by Chelsey, a Canadian girl from Vancouver. Although it didn't actually include much walking, the historical tour was very interesting and informative. I had just received 'the other side of the story' in Northern Ireland, so it was funny to hear all the nuances and differing viewpoints in the same stories.

After lunch, we went to visit the Kilmainham Gaol jail. It was almost surreal to hear about all the famous people in Irish history whi had been hung and beheaded there! And when we walked into the jail's most 'recent' wing, I thought it looked exactly like what I expected a prison to be - only to find out it had been used in over 80 movies, so my visual idea of a jail probably comes from that actual one. Before this latest wing was added, the jail was designed to hold 110 prisoners in 110 cells, but at the height of its occupancy during the Great Famine, it held more than 3,000 at once! You can only imagine the conditions they lived in... An Australian girl, Becc, had come with us to the jail, so the four of us went back to the hostel for dinner. Some of Anna's friends came over and we intended to go to a comedy show, but we started having a few drinks and decided not to go. The girls all ended up going out, but I went to bed early because I had to wake up the next morning to go on my tour...
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