The excitement was too much! Prior to leaving on this fantastic journey, no sleep could be found. Having flown out of Oklahoma City to Chicago where our flight was delayed then to Newark NJ where a 10 hr layover became 11 before boarding for the long flight to dublin…I had lost track of time and the distance between the last time I had slept. My husband had the right idea. He quiet literally wore lounge pants T-shirt and flip flops ( AKA his Pajamas!) for the entire journey.
Read about it: Ireland prelude
The drive in to our hotel from the airport was as fantastic as the weather. It was a 110° F back home and I worked predominately outside on the the ranch. I don’t mind telling you that at 60°, while our tour guide was taking off his jacket due to “the heat wave “, I was in heaven!
We stopped at our hotel only for a brief moment to drop our luggage in the lobby and jump back on the coach to head to Trinity College. I covered that in my post Dublin day 1 pt 1, but I can’t resist telling you again how wonderful the libray is…so wonderful in fact, that it’s used as the library for Harry Potters Hogwarts.
Afterward, Clay and I decided to walk back to the hotel instead of waiting for our coach so off we went taking in the sights as we went. Along the way we stopped at a pub for a pint. We stopped at J. W. Sweetman’s. It was everything you’ve ever dreamt of in an Irish pub. This pub was established in 1756! A pint in a pub that’s older than my country! Imagine that!
The funny thing about pubs in Ireland that we happily discovered is that you cannot equate them to an American bar. Joyfully, there are no 21 yr old sloshed females twerking on the bar, no annoying pop music blasting so loud you can’t hear yourself think much less hold a conversation. It’s actually quite delightful. Sure there have been singers singing irish tunes, to some we’ve sang along but we easily held conversations with locals who hearing us speak identified us as Yanks and were quick with warm welcomes, friendly banter, quick wit and much laughter.
A typical Sunday: after church or mass, the family gathers to eat the Sunday roast (Sunday supper) then heads over to the pub to watch a rugby or soccer match. This may be in part because in Ireland you have to pay $100 tax per television in your home? Yikes but worth it maybe. Lol Anyway, families, friends and neighbors, gather there, adults having a pint, children lining the bar having soda’s and all watching sports, visiting with one another and cheering their teams. It’s a community social gathering spot.
Clay had a single pint of Guinness, bought a T-shirt and I had none. Therefore I cannot blame the brew for what happened next. I’d also like to blame it on not having slept for nearly 2 days but the sad truth is, is that Clay and I are simply bent toward calamity.
Leaving the pub, we soon realized that neither of us thought to note the name of the hotel!!!! Fabulous! Lost in Ireland day 1. Thankfully, I was so attentive to everything while driving to the hotel and took so many pictures from the coach that we soon began following landmarks that were along the way.
We ended up strolling through St Stephen’s Green Park that I noted as being just across from our hotel. Again, identified as American by a local who lived by the park, stopped us to chat and welcomed us with exceptional friendliness and warmth.
Alas, we found our hotel, O’Callaghan Stephen’s Green Hotel, and were ready for refreshments. Our tour group had arrived and we all settled in for dinner.
Having seen the movie (laughed and cried) “P.S. I Love You”, starring Gerard Butler and Hilary Swank, I HAD to see Whelan’s Pub that I knew was just around the corner from our Hotel so again we were off on foot but taking proper measures to note our location this time.
That was it! We were toast! Pure exhaustion drove us back to our hotel which was absolutely heaven. A top floor room with a rooftop patio. After a hot shower, we fell straight onto our faces and slept like babies. Our body clocks were wildly off and we both woke chipper, just before dawn. Clay made coffee and we went out on the patio to watch the sunrise while waiting for the breakfast hour to arrive.
5:45 am. Having coffee and listening to sea gulls in the cool morning 57°. Sunrise from our rooms rooftop patio. I’m reminded here of how much of a “rat race” we are in and is natural to our culture back home in comparison to Europe. The ideal 9 to 5 “bankers hours” even loses its shine here as their’s is 10 to 4pm. Lol Very little moves or opens here prior to 7:30am. That’s the early breakfast. At 6am, not a building light was on, no traffic in the city. From our rooftop, only 3 people could be seen moving about the empty streets. Only now at nearly 7am , have we began to hear any city sounds as a slower paced world begins to greet the day.