Saturday, October 22, 2011

Scotland and Ireland Day Nine - Our last day in Dublin...

Yet again the Husband and I slept in. As soon as we did wake up though, we grabbed a cab from in front of the hotel and drove out to a cemetery in the sub-burbs of Dublin. A friend of the Husband's had family who lived in Ireland who recently passed away, he was unable to attend the funeral, but had asked us to get pictures of the grave site. That may seem weird and morbid to people, but I come from a family who has family members buried in different states, and when my Grandma and my Aunts visit those states sometimes they'll take pictures of the graves, so I was used to it growing up.

We couldn't find our friend's family's grave sites, but the cemetery was lovely to walk around and look at. Here, in California, most of the cemeteries aren't so busy, or, if they are, they don't feel like it since the grave markers are set into the ground instead of standing up. This place was pretty packed; the graves were right next to each other as far as the eye can see. The only exception was in the older parts of the cemetery - here tombstones would trickle off into the trees, and it just felt very magical. Like anything could happen. But sacred at the same time. It was a weird feeling.

After walking around the cemetery for a little bit longer, we tried to find another taxi that would take us back to the city center. Sadly there wasn't a taxi to be found, but there were a couple of buses. After our previous experiences with the Dublin Bus system we were a bit leary, but thankfully we managed to get on one that was heading to Pheonix Park, which was a stop on the hop on hop off bus tour that we had bought the day before. So, we got off the Dublin Bus and hopped onto the sight seeing bus. We had already seen most of what we wanted to see, so we just rode around on the bus for awhile listening to the tour guide talk before getting off at St Patrick's Cathedral.

The cathedral was built in 1191, and is another church that has some lovely tombs and memorials inside with amazing statues that give you a really good idea of what people wore way back when. 

Sadly, we were having issues with both our cameras by then, so I don't have as many pictures of the end of our trip as I do of the beginning. Our fancier camera eats up batteries like they are going out of style, and the smaller camera that we had bought specifically for our trip had a cracked LCD screen (We have no idea how that happened) It could still take photos, but it was a mystery if those pictures actually came out or not until we got home and uploaded them to our computer (the camera is fixed now)

(This is one of those mystery shots)

(And here's another one)

After visiting St Patrick's cathedral we went back to the Temple Bar District again. This time we stopped at Gallagher's Boxty House, and it was still early enough in the day that we were able to get their three course lunch special. Boxtys are potato pancakes that have a filling and are OH so yummy. There's a recipe for a Gaelic Boxty on the Food Network website that I highly recommend checking out. The Husband has been looking at it a lot lately, so I can tell he's planning on making one soon. 

When we were done eating, we walked through one of the larger Carrolls shops in the area. There are a number of Irish gift and souvenir shops in Dublin, but Carrolls is the leading store with shops near all the popular tourist spots (we counted three on one street, granted they were several blocks apart, but still) They carry everything from t-shirts to jewelry, shortbread and fudge to books, hats, scarves, and hanging signs galore. Oh, and there's plenty of rugby, soccer/football, and Guinness paraphernalia too. The Husband and I selected gifts to take back to our family, grabbed a taxi, and went back to the hotel to try to pack all this stuff up into our bags. 

Our flight was supposed to leave the next day around 11am, so we knew we'd have to get up fairly early to make it to the airport, and then through customs on time. After checking our bags one last time, we ordered some pizza from room service, and then turned off the lights and tried to get some sleep.

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