The Rocky Road to Dublin

Trip Start May 01, 2010
Trip End May 24, 2010

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Flag of Ireland  , County Dublin,
Friday, May 21, 2010

Actually it wasn't all that rocky :)
Today it was a fairly quick trip to Dublin from Kilkenny, we were all fairly excited to get out of that insane hotel too. Our first stop in Dublin was at the Guinness Storehouse. I originally wasn't going to do this optional excursion, but I'm glad I did. I mean, when in Dublin...
It wasn't a guided distillery tour like the others were, this was a do-it-yourself walkaround thing. It was really quite interesting, actually. There was lots of interactive stuff as you go up the building, and it had a bunch of old Guinness advertisements and stuff like that. It was fun. Then, with your ticket is included a free pint, which you can either get up in the Gravity Bar, which overlooks all of Dublin, or you can do a 'Pour Your Own Pint' activity, where you're taught the very specific technique of pouring a Guinness.
I think everyone did the Pour Your Own Pint thing, you got a certificate afterwards! I had another sip of mine, only because I needed a picture with my Guinness mustache. It was just as gross as the first time! Haha. We went up to the Gravity Bar for a little bit and I got rid of my pint to someone who would actually drink it! We made a quick stop in the gift shop of the Storehouse before leaving, where I bought a pretty sweet shirt.
Some of us chose to get on the bus, where we were taken into more central Dublin just to wander around. I sort of regret not checking out Trinity College or Christchurch or the Book of Kells, but I don't mind that much. We ended up walking down Grafton Street hunting for lunch, as well as souvenirs. Lunch was paninis at the St. Stephens Green Shopping centre. Yum!
We then walked back to the hotel and waited for everyone else to show up with the coach so we could get our bags. It was our last night together tonight, and it was a big excursion dinner at the Merry Ploughboys Pub. Everyone got all prettied up and then we hopped on the bus for what felt like a really long journey to this pub!
It was a lot of fun! The Merry Ploughboys played their traditional Irish music while we (and about 4 other tour groups!) ate, and then there was some Irish dancing, then more music. After the meal was all over, we hopped on a loaner coach (Pete needed a break before our big drive back to London tomorrow) and were taken back into the Temple Bar district. We went to a place called Fitzsimon's, I think. It was about 4 stories high, and absolutely packed with people. We originally couldn't find enough room for everyone, but we ended up taking over a little corner on the 3rd floor and had our own Contiki dance party!
Eventually we headed to the real dance floor, but the DJ wasn't that great at this club, so we didn't stay out there for a very long time like other places. After that we headed up to the rooftop, where, to our surprise, they had the Stanley Cup Playoffs playing on one of the tvs! It was the second or third round, and not anyone's favourite teams, but a bunch of the Canadians got stupidly excited about it!
I didn't have a late night tonight, and I think I went back to the hotel at around 1 with a few of the others.
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