Last March of the Ents

Today was the last day in Ireland. How sad… we will be returning though, at some point in the future. That I know. Ireland is too beautiful a country to not see more of it.

We started the day going to Trinity College again to buy sweatshirts. Mission: Accomplished. We also looked for a square Old Library Key chain for Courtney, but NOT A SINGLE ONE REMAINED! I cannot believe it! How ridiculous. I hope they have it online..Otherwise, I’ll just request it via e-mail.

We then tried to go to Castle Greyskull… It’s actually Dublin Castle and looks nothing like Castle Greyskull, but for some reason I couldn’t remember the name of the castle that resides in the middle of Dublin… so I called “Dublin Castle” by the name “Castle Greyskull.” I’m sure there’s a “Johnny Rockets” somewhere near by.

We only had about 45 minutes to get to the bus stop for the Wicklow Mountains National Park at Glen da loch, and the only way to see Dublin Castle is via guided tour that lasts 50 minutes, and the next tour would not start soon enough anyway, so we said next time we’ll definitely go there. It looked awesome from what we could see from the door way.

We went via charter bus to Glen da loch, and walked a trail and saw an old stone Cathedral and a very old graveyard, that was surrounded by mountains and an amazing lake and waterfalls in the hills. Awesome nature area that I could spend days wandering. It’s no wonder that Tolkien loved the environment of the hilly woodland so much.. it’s really amazing. The trip went by rolling hills filled with sheep and horses. Pretty impressive.

After we got back, we got food over at Temple Bar at a cafe. We then wandered around and went to a grocery store and then listened to about 30 seconds of real LIVE Irish music. Then we found our way to a small Ice Cream shop and got Hot Chocolate. After which we caught our bus back to the Hotel by the Airport, and waited at the Airport for our Hotel shuttle for about 30+ minutes (for a shuttle that runs every 15 minutes to and from a hotel that is 3 minutes away). Now we’re getting ready to depart for Chicago tomorrow morning.

We have much to say about the trip so keep reading.

Trinity College…Awesome! I mean seriously..wow.

Today was an easy day. We started out looking for breakfast, and found a bagel place that was like a subway, with Bagels instead of Sub buns. The Bagel Factory. It was pretty good. Then we went to Carroll’s for stuff to take home.

We found our way on foot to the Museum of Natural History and saw many Irish animals including the skeletons of many Giant Irish Deer. It’s really quite cool and HUGE! After that we ran into the German couple that we met on the tour the previous day. That was awesome! Talk about a small town (of all the millions of people!).

We found a Catholic book shop called “Veritas” and Courtney and I bought Rosaries.

Then we went to Temple Bar and found a small Crepe shop and got Chocolate Crepes with Vanilla Ice Cream. We then went to Trinity College and saw the Book of Kells. That was one of my favorite parts of the day. The Book of Kells is incredible, and was written around 800 AD. After the Book of Kells exhibit, we found our way upstairs to the Trinity College Old Library. That was quite a sight to behold. Two flights of books…all roped off… but incredible.

We then looked around the Trinity College book shop, and tried to go to Dublin Castle, but it was closing. We went to Johnny Rockets, or as the shop is actually called Eddie Rockets… but I can’t seem to call it anything BUT Johnny Rockets… and I don’t know why. We met up with Rachel and her friend from St. Mary’s College and we went Back to Temple Bar to find Irish Stew… it was too expensive so we went to a Pub upstairs where we could get food.

We then went back to Carrol’s where Courtney and I bought matching Ireland Backpacks. We then went to another pub where we played cards and talked for a while before making our way back to the Hotel. A few awkward moments happened that I feel bad about… but that’s okay… it’s a learning occasion.

Oh, and our tour to the Waterford Crystal Factory was cancelled due to circumstances beyond our control… darn… guess we’ll have to come back to Ireland sometime soon.

Tomorrow is the last day!

Saturday in Dublin

Saturday, after leaving the hotel, we made our way to Dublin, where we spent a few hours exploring the city, and checking out the prices at local restaurants. The prices weren’t actually too bad at many of the places. We stopped looking around when I was so hungry that I could walk no further. So we went to this little place called “La Pizza.” Great choice for our first meal in Ireland, eh? But we more than made up for it for our next meal, which I will write about in my next entry.

We then went to the spire in the middle of the town after getting ahold of our friend Rachel, who was going to meet us there. She took us around to many places included a mall, through Temple Bar (where people were playing music in the street) and to a park where we saw green green grass and all sorts of green vegetation.. awesome. It was so nice to see the green plants everywhere, after leaving the white fields of Michigan.

After that, we left by train for Maynooth, where Rachel goes to college. More later.