A Travellerspoint blog

Tuesday in Dublin

A Whirlwind Day!

The weather was sunny, but very cool. We did the Hop On/Hop Off tourist bus. Behind Trinity College we toured many Palladian (Georgian) town houses. Many of the doors were painted bright colours. This was a reaction to the announcement of Queen Victoria’s death. Instructions were given that in Dublin, Britain’s second largest city, all doors were to be painted black, to commemorate the Queen’s death. Instead, they painted all their doors the most vivid colours imaginable. They continue this to the current day.

Hopping on the bus, we disembarked in the Temple Bar district, where we enjoyed a rare 2 for 1 lunch at The Shack, directly opposite the Temple Bar Pub.

Then back on the bus, we stopped at the Guinness Brewery. This is a massive, 45+ acre establishment. The tour is highly detailed, and explains the process from basic ingredients to barrels and ships made to transport Arthur’s beer to all points of the world. Since I used to home brew my own beer, I know the basics of this. But I never mastered the proper mix as did Guinness.

After the Guinness tour came a much more sombre tour: that of the Kilmainham Gaol, built in the late 1700s. This gaol is foreboding and intimating to us moderns, but to the people at the time, it was part of the progressive prison reform movement. Prisoners were to be housed singularly, with light and air, and to have proper supervision.

Leaving the Gaol, we hopped back on the bus, and went through Phoenix Park, which is huge; larger than Central Park. Half way through, we saw the Residence of the American Ambassador to Ireland. Perhaps as an notice of how important is the Irish-American alliance, the Residence of the President of the Republic is located directly opposite.

We ended the day with the Literary Pub Crawl, which TripAdvisor rates as the No. 4 tour in all the world. Meeting at the Duke Pub, we were entertained by two professional actors, who introduced us to the Dublin literary tradition of Yeats, Joyce, Brendan Behan and all.

The first skit was an excerpt from Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, which I saw a few years ago with Ian McKennan in London at the Haymarket. We then went from pub to pub, with literary skits and lectures, ending up where we had dinner at Davy Byrne’s pub; the last Art Deco pub in Dublin. It was a highly enjoyable night, but a long day, and we got into the cottage about 11.30PM.

Posted by stbrides 14:25 Archived in Ireland Comments (0)

Monday in Dublin

Walking Historical Tour

sunny 52 °F

My first Monday in Dublin was a whirlwind affair with lots of walking.

Sister Robin and I took the tram to downtown, then walked to Trinity College, where Gavin, a post graduate student in literature and history, gave a group of about 10 of us a tour of Dublin; with an emphasis on the historical aspects. He was extremely informative, but at the end we were tuckered out.

Trinity College was beautiful and interesting. It was founded in the late 1500s by Queen Elizabeth in order to establish the new Protestant ascendency; so that the English landlords did not have to send their sons to England for a classical education. We also walked through the Irish Parliament, which is now a bank. Ireland was unique in having its own Parliament, which lasted until the rising of 1798. Westminster took to heart the loss of America and the French revolution.

We also learnt more about Irish/English relations over the years; never very good.

The Dublin Castle, what Gavin declares as the worst castle in Christendom, is closed to the public. Ireland is currently the President of the European Union, and they meet here from time to time; so the entire Castle is closed. But Gavin is right; not much of a castle.

After the tour it was time for lunch at the Christchurch area Bull and Castle pub, where my lunch was the lamb stew.

After walking about and some shopping, it was time for the tram and home to the Cottage.

Tuesday will be the Hop-on/Hop-off tour during the day (save our tired feet!), and then the Literary Pub Crawl in the evening. This will take us round the worlds of James Joyce, YB Yeats, etc. Apparently of the top 50 walking tours in the world, this is no. 4.

Chapel @ Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin

Chapel @ Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin

Please see the photo gallery I am also building.

My blessings to you all!

RSP+

Posted by stbrides 12:07 Archived in Ireland Comments (0)

Sunday in Dublin

Like the dollar bill, we went to church, and we went to church…

rain 44 °F

Somewhat recovered from serious jet-lag, Sunday morning saw sister Robin and I out the door by 10.00 for the Holy Eucharist at the Cathedral. This was a choral Eucharist.

We walked along the south Quay of the harbour and caught the tram into central Dublin. The tram operator approached us as we were attempting to purchase our ticket, saying that he was leaving and we'd miss the tram. So he covered for us, telling us to purchase a return on the way back.

We made it in time for the 11.00 Holy Eucharist. It was a lovely Mass, with the Missa Brevis by Palistrina, and a choir of about 20 persons. The Homily was well done by the Dean; in 8 minutes (I timed it) he hit all the high points of 'love one another' and had two touching stories to help remember.

I have heard it said that Irish Anglicanism is not too keen on the externals, but they put up a pretty good show nonetheless. There were three sacred ministers, (unfortunately) a lady priest (very trendy), so no reception of Holy Communion for me today. There was a full Gospel procession.

Many aspects of this high church Irish Eucharist resemble what we do at S. Bride's; especially facing East as often as possible. Of course, no incense, no chanting; but still a beautiful liturgy, where I felt like I'd been in Church; even if I wasn't at S. Bride's!

We made friends with the chief usher, gatekeeper, gift shoppe keeper, etc. Dennis. We must have seen him 15 times today in various capacities. This reminds me of what makes parishes run all the world round: good and faithful people who love God, love their parish, and will do whatever needs doing.

Sister Robin and I had a good hotel restaurant lunch at the Jurys Hotel; appropriate as the area is called the Four Courts area. Then it was back across the street to Evensong. I had a few minutes to catch some wonderful photos (some enclosed) and on to Evensong.

Being basically Low Church, there was no holy water stoups, no incense (am I repeating myself?) and the votive candles were cleverly hidden. Still, I lit a candle for all my people at S. Bride's, and for my cousin Pete to be wed this next weekend.

After Evensong, and shopping in the Cathedral gift shoppe (which Dennis ran, of course), we walked down the road through Temple Bar to Trinity College. The owner of our cottage just got his PhD there in James Joyce's literature.

There we found a Starbucks and (no surprise) I suggested to sister Robin that we stop for a cool refreshing beverage of hot coffee. I bought a couple mugs (Starbucks Dublin mugs to add to my collection), and we pressed on to Trinity. Purchased our tickets for the hop on/hop off bus, and wound our way home, via the tram.

Tomorrow we are taking a historical walking tour of Dublin from 11.00 to 14.30; perhaps a musical pub tour in the evening.

This evening, we are relaxing in the cottage, getting ready for tomorrow's outing.

Pictures to follow.

Posted by stbrides 12:42 Archived in Ireland Tagged dublin Comments (0)

On my way!

Had a bit of a fright. The plane to JFK was nearly an hour late in departing, and I was going to miss my flight to Dublin. Instead, Delta rerouted me on a later flight, and direct, good job, Delta!

Posted by stbrides 13:23 Archived in USA Comments (1)

First Stop, Phoenix

Wedding & Family Time

sunny 91 °F

On Monday I started on my sabbatical, at least officially. But the first stop was not Dublin, but Phoenix!

The youngest of my three sisters was getting married, and the entire family was gathering together to support her celebrate this.

Tomorrow Monday I flight back, and am home for a few days. Then it is off to Dublin! Been playing the chieftains to get myself in the mood.

image.jpg

Posted by stbrides 20:24 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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