New Years in Dublin

Trip Start Dec 19, 2007
Trip End Apr 16, 2008

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Flag of Ireland  ,
Monday, December 31, 2007

What could a person possibly do in Ireland on New Years Eve? The Irish are more than well known for putting back a few pints, so that is exactly what we did. We started the day off with a tour around the Guinness storehouse. You can't actually see the factory but there is a series of displays about how the beer is brewed, process of making wooden kegs by hand, advertising... We thought it was a great tour and the best part was a pint of the black stuff in the gravity bar at the end. It was up a tower with a 360 degree view of the city. By far the best pint of Guinness I've had. Next stop on the Dublin drinking tour was the Jameson whisky distillery plant. None of us are huge whiskey fans (honestly can't recall drinking the stuff as anything other than a shot) so we figured this was a perfect opportunity to hone our whiskey skills. They required volunteers from the group to do some "professional" taste testing. Naturally I volunteered but Wendy was not quite as brave! The tour itself was similar to the Guinness tour except that there was a guide this time. At the end everyone got a more than generous serving of whiskey to try out. In addition, myself and 5 other soon to be drunks were given 5 shots of whiskey. 3 different Irish brands, a shot of Johnny Walker to represent the Scots and JD for the American flavor. The differences were notable but I haven't been converted to a whisky drinker. Following the two tours we were all well on our way to a successful evening. We spent the rest of the evening in an Irish pub with our family here. It was within stumbling distance home so it worked out well. The next day we headed for a short trip north hangovers and all. To Wendy's dismay we found out the effect that too much whiskey has on my body. An unbearable release of toxic based from my body that make any length of a road trip unbearable. Our first destination was a small coastal town called Lockshinny. It has some really interesting geological formations including fossils. Thomas loved it. Next we headed to an archaeological site called Newgrange. It is an ancient burial tomb that dates back later than Stonehenge. It also is built so that it is in the dark year round except for 15 minutes during the winter solstice when the sun is perfectly in line with the entrance.
Dublin was a great time. Thomas and I got to catch up with mo relatives we hadn't seen in years while Wendy and I were given one last taste of traveling without spending insane amounts of money. Leaving Dublin we bid farewell to home cooked meals and welcome cold hostel showers.
Next stop: Rome 
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