Trip Start Mar 03, 2011
48Trip End Jun 03, 2011
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I woke up at 8am because I accidentally passed out early but still managed to sleep a long time... Chris and I didn't plan on meeting up in the hall until 9am, so I just got up, grabbed some green glitter nail polish, Lord of the Rings, and walked into the hall. The first thing I hear is live Irish music. Breakfast was in full swing and there was a live band. Add coffee, and I just woke up in effing HEAVEN. I just sat in a window seat, painting my nails, reading a good book and enjoyin my coffee to the accompaniment of awesome music. Sigh.
Chris got up at 9am and it was breakfast time. This is Part 2 of the awesome start to our day. For the past couple weeks we'd been subsisting on the toast and instant coffee from Paddywagon
After that we got greened up and headed out to meet our friends from the tour. We got to the parade on O'Connell Street at 10:45am... it didn't officially start until noon, and it didn't actually make it to our segment of the route until almost 12:45pm. That's a lot of waiting. As early as we got there, we still didn't have great views. I'm so thankful we got there when we did, though. It was a mad house. We managed to secure a spot behind a news camera platform... there was a space right behind it that left a four foot horizontal view of the parade passing by... and if you sat/stood atop the railing you could see over the cameraman's shoulder to the oncoming parade. That's the best we could get. Thousands upon thousands of people fared much worse than us. We were packed in body to body like sardines in a can... I had thoughts about stampedes running through my head... damn that would suck. We'd be screwed. It was funny to see the creative ways in which people in the back managed to still get views of the parade... One guy was sitting on a bunch of signs... his ass HAD to hurt. Another girl was standing on top of a phone booth. Dozens of people were on statues. I have no idea how they all got up there. Myself.. I sat on a barrier. My ass was cramping and I lost circulation, but I saw more of the parade then poor Chris. Some Indian guy kept shoving into him tryin to film the parade with his video camera. Chris was utterly annoyed and wouldn't budge. Just to be passive aggressive, he purposely tried to screw up the guy's filming. lol. Go, Chris! That's what rude people get
So the parade finally starts (St. Patrick leading the way in sunglasses) and we quickly discover we have nooooooooooo idea what this thing is about. I'm sure there was some sort of cultural singificance to the costumes and floats, but I'll be damned if I can figure them out. I mean... I just spent the past 2 weeks in Ireland, and nothing seemed particularly Irish about the parade! It looked like someone raided the Cirque du Soleil costume department! It was still neat to see the costumes- I'll give them that. Since I had no idea what it was about, I made up my own captions and explanations in my pictures. =) Notable visitors were Gandalf the Grey, potato chips and Fawx the Phoenix.
After the parade we headed northeast to Croke Park to watch some Gaelic Games finals. We missed half of the first game, which was Hurling... or as we like to call it... Crazy Stick Ball. The second game was Gaelic Football. So... I've never watched either game (except part of the Gaelic Football on TV for a few minutes last time I was in Ireland)... but here's what we could figure out. Hurling is like a combo of soccer, hockey and football. The positions and movement of the game are exactly like soccer and hockey
After the game, we all bought dinner (Chris and I bought a pizza) and drinks to get the pre-party started at Paddy's Palace
Today, Chris has an epic hangover but I feel wonderful. So I've spent the last few hours updating the blog while he rests at the hostel. It's a rest day. Hopefully he'll be well enough to go out for dinner with our tour friends later on tonight. Chris, "This is all your fault you know..." Me, "What? Why?" Chris, "You said that going home anything less than plastered on St. Paddy's Day would be shameful." Me, "....yeah... but the important thing is you can go home without shame." =)