Trip Start Sep 06, 2004
Trip End Nov 23, 2004

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Flag of Ireland  ,
Saturday, September 11, 2004

I started the day with a late breakfast at The Coffee Club, a cafe that serves gluten-free food (!). (GF-friendly food includes yummy dessert-style bread, GF brownies, soup, sandwiches, eggs, baked potato). Then it went downhill from there with more unsuccessful job searching in the city centre and online. I hate dropping off my resumes for retail positions (even though I had resolved that it would be okay) and I hate looking for work. And I miss Arvin. I don't feel like talking to anybody.

Later we went shopping. Groceries first--attempted to find strategic food with little to no fridge space. I settled on pre-cut vegetables for stir-fry, instant egg-fried rice, a plum sauce packet, bananas, "crisps" (potato chips), and milk. We also looked in Penney's, a department store that has dirt-cheap clothing, even by Canadian standards. Even the more expensive clothing stores, like Dunne's (also a department store) don't seem to be any higher than at home. Definitely a plus for when I have a flat.

That night our roommates returned from a bus tour of Connemara (wild area north of Galway). We went out to try and find last night's act, which was supposed to be playing at a different pub, but it wasn't. Then we met up with the New Zealanders Katherine met yesterday at La Salsa (I haven't had any "real Irish food" yet!), went to a pub called Monroe's and listened to live reggae etc., back to La Salsa for a snack, then an after-hours bar called The Living Room (packed because the pubs close at midnight), and finally back to the hostel. Let me reiterate--this didn't involve that much alcohol! I only had one drink and Katherine had 3.

We still didn't go to bed though--we ended up talking to the night shift guy behind the desk, Ryan, who is from Edmonton (!) and has been on SWAP since June. (It took him 3 weeks to find a job but June is a bad time in general.) He was funny and we had a good time, especially because Katherine has a crush on him. We watched the tipsy hostellers filtering back and kept updating the score of the hockey game (Canada vs. Czech) online (we couldn't actually watch it, just get the score). Much more natural than listening to drunk New Zealanders trying to explain rugby or us trying to figure out what "hurling" is (Irish game that looks vaguely like lacrosse, not the caber toss as might be supposed--today is the championship, Cork vs. Kilkenny). Anyway we were up until 5 AM!

And how did I feel about pubbing? Well, it wasn't nearly as loud as the night before, but I hardly talked at all, got mostly ignored, and I've still heard almost no Irish music. Apart from people-watching (not nearly as much flesh as there might be at home) and talking to Katherine and Ryan afterwards, the night was another bust. I just went because everyone I knew was going, and I'd already had enough of the hostel that day.

Final note on the day: The water here in Galway tastes like fish!
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