The Dublin experience

Trip Start Mar 13, 2010
Trip End Jun 12, 2010

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Flag of Ireland  , County Dublin,
Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I took a bus into Dublin on Monday from Belfast. In Belfast I had stayed in two different hostels for one night each. This is a little bit anoying because of the need to pack up early, check out, and then wait for the next hostel to begin letting you check in. The time you spend waiting is usually around 3 to 4 hours. Luckily they have a bag dropoff, so I'm not lugging my bag around with me all day. The first day, I spent exploring the city, and I met some Australians who I hung around that night. Unfortunately I never saw them again after that because I had to switch to the other hostel in a bit. One of the Aussies told me that they had gone out to a place called the giants causeway. There was a tour leaving from a hostel they had visited earlier, and revomended I go. It was only 18 for a full day tour, so I did go. So on that second morning, I packed all my stuff up, and checked out. I left my bag at the luggage holding room and headed off for a bite to eat. I had known that Sunday morning was the end to daylight savings time but it still screwed me up. I had woken up earlier than I had thought, it was quarter to seven and my tour didn't leave until eight thirty. I had some time to kill. So I wondered around on a cold Sunday morning hoping something would be open. Nothing was, not even the churches opened till 11:30. And the grocery store wasn't open till 1:30. I was able to find a small corner store around eight o'clock. I went to buy a coffee and doughnut, and to my surprise, they were selling timmies. That made the long wait worth it. I did eventually make my way to the bus, and we started out into the countryside. Our guide wasn't nearly as good as in my other tours, but it was still a fun tour. Our first stop was this rope bridge that went across this cliff to a small cliffed island. It was beautiful, but they wanted 6 just to cross the bridge. Most people did though, and it didn't look that exciting. It was only about 15 meters across so it wasn't massive. Next we went to the giants causeway which is a bunch of hexagonal columns that jut out of the stone. It looks like a road on the flat spots, and like stairs in others. It was breathtakingly beautiful, and well worth the trip. We had lunch at a hotel there, and then we went on to our next stop which was called Londonderry. It is a town with a bloody history. Even now there is strife between the prodostants (who want independance) and Catholics (who are loyal to the UK). There have been carbombs, open street brawls, arson, and even a sign that once said "beware of snipers". There were murals (paintings) on the walls with things such as Freederry (the prodostants don't like the London, because is signifies their affiliation with England), and other things that were often violant. It was a bit "dodgy" so I never went down to the bad part of the city. That was our last stop of the tour and we headed back to Belfast. The next morning, I hopped on a bus and went to Dublin. So far I have not done a whole bunch. Everything here is ridiculously expensive. They are charging €12 for a salad, that is a $18 salad. I have been eating at the hostel with food from a supermarket. It much cheaper this way. Yesterday I went on a walking tour of Dublin, and it was cold. It was actually sleeting and it was windy. The tour was good though. It was the same company I did in Edinburgh and both times my guides have been awesome. It was my guides first day and he was only 2 weeks older than me. That was cool. He knew quite a bit about the city, and was able to retell some of the history. I also met a guy my age from Barrie Ontario. Unfortunately he left for London today but we might meet up again somewhere else. Hopefully I never forgot anything since I last blogged, but that's about everything so far. I am spending 2 more nights in Dublin, then will travel to Grenoble in France to ski for a couple days. A French guy was telling me that there are tons of hills nearby. I dont have anything planned for after that, but am thinking of going to Croatia next. I'm getting tired of this rainy weather and wouldn't mind some sun.
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Darren on

Hey kiddo, I'm glad to hear you are doing fine and enjoying the sights of Ireland! Spring is here so I am sure the weather will be improving soon... Have fun skiing in France, I am jealous! We all miss you back home. Love, dad

Mom on

Thanks for the postcards! Cason liked his and the girls read them aloud to each other. We miss you lots and enjoy the updates. I hope you spend some time in some hot places too. Sounds like Ireland is cold. Are you warm enough? Have you done any shopping?

RDC has your transcripts and reference letters. I'll keep you posted on any other correspondence. Looks like you are all set to go for college in the fall.

Be safe!

grandma on

Thanks for the post card it was so good to hear from you when your were in Paris. We look forward to reading your blogs so thanks for keeping us informed. Skiing in France sounds like fun so enjoy yourself and keep safe. Looking forward to your next blog. Love you and miss you.
from grandma and grandpa

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