So here I am in dublin, tapping my feet to mumford and sons, having another go at my blog. It’s now a day after arriving off a virtually straight 24hr flight. This was my 4th time flying into dublin, and everytime i get the 747 into town, my colgates show and i grin like i’ve just pulled off the cheekiest stunt. Being greeted by the liffey on a cool sunday evening, is always a memory stirrer, especially recalling st paddys day earlier this year and the state of the city then. Green shamrocks and orange bearded live leprechauns everywhere.
Missing my stop at temple bar purposefully so i can take a walk down from city hall, i haul my backpack on and am greeted by the sweet, cool rain and wind that i weirdly kinda missed since i last visited. Fighting with my beard to get out of my scarf, i meander down the road, all too aware that now my beard is loose, it is now being shoved into my mouth by the prevalent winds kicking about town. Beard sandwich anyone? It’s great for flossing.
Finding my way to temple bar square, where as usual, it’s packed with backpackers like me, some touting adverts and lightboards on their backs, waving at me to sign up for free pints, i escape the chaos and slip down crown alley, trying not to stack it on the wet cobblestones, to find an old friend, and the merchants arch. And sure enough, ringing out the doors is the warm sound of a trad band giving it a proper go with the lively rabble inside belting out the lyrics and stamping their feet, while a lively banjo whittles away. Wet and windy in front of the ha’penny bridge it may be, but miserable the atmosphere isn’t.
While i wait for my friend Ted to arrive, i happen to catch eyes with a red bearded bloke who is looking at me, lovingly almost. The fella’s eyes light up and the hand of god reaches for my beard and the connection is made. Beards uniting beards around the world. So i meet Paul and Simon from coventry, england, and while exchanging manly beardlike pleasantries, my friend Ted appears out of thin air! After hugging hello, my new friends and girlfriends toddle over, in the wind and the rain to greet a weary traveller and invite Ted and I inside for pints. Such is the way in dublin, and is why i harbour a great love for this city. The local friendly attitude is seemingly bestowed onto all those that pass through, a culture that is yet to be surpassed for me. Gods i love this city.
After getting to Ted’s place, and sleeping a whole day, I am greeted that evening by Ted’s housemate Phil, (who is “the best chef in ireland”) with a bloody ripper of a dinner, my first proper meal in days. Steak, veges, sweet potato with cabbage and bacon run through it, super crispy potato and fried chicken. Boom! Trying to hold down my food orgasms was a feat in itself.
After smashing the meal down my gullet like a starving piranha, we’re off to the local pub to drink many beers and watch ireland win for euro qualifications. Let’s face it, not drinking beer in a pub while watching the irish back their football team feels criminal. Then Walters scored… I forgot there was a pub momentarily, it felt like i was in the stadium with the whole crowd behind me as we hollered and celebrated our first goal, splashing beers and ciders, littering the floor with peanuts, hi fiving each other like we’d won the world cup. We ended up winning 2-0. You can only guess how that went…
You could go to any pub in dublin and get the same atmospheric conditions as at the stadium. They’re a passionate lot to say the least. It’s been a wonderful start to my adventure, dublin is being it’s usual wonderful welcoming self. It’s more then just a city to me. It’s atmospheric, passionate, friendly, warm and welcoming. A growing book of memories even. They do a great pint too. It’s good to be home. Slainte!