Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Dubliners and a Concert in a Barnyard

We spent an entire week living like the Irish in Dublin. Meaning, we drank a lot and complained about the shit weather. So it is JULY and, while we had 2 great sunny days during our week-long trip, it was still cold. Like barely-breaking-60-degrees kind of cold.

So Dave and I worked all week and then went to Sunday's Florence and the Machine/Snow Patrol/Other Random Artists I Hadn't Heard Of concert in Phoenix Park. We also caught up on some of the touristy things here in Dublin that we haven't done on past trips.

Such as the Kilmainham Gaol, which is an old prison that held your common prisoners and Irish revolutionaries during the 18th through 20th centuries. They give a pretty good historical presentation/tour. However, it is a rather long and pub-less walk over there from central Dublin (especially in the rain). We were planning to stop off for a beer at the Guinness Storehouse on the way, but you have to pay for the 16.50 tour JUST to be allowed to go to the bar/restaurant they have there. I'm sure the Guinness is fresh and all, but come on!

Looks kind of like Alcatraz.

We also happily participated in a tour of Jameson's whiskey distillery, which is a bit misleading. Jameson's makes all their whiskey over in County Cork now, not in Dublin. You just get a rather Disneyesque tour of the old building and facilities where they used to make the whiskey. Plus there are some overly dramatized videos about the history of the whiskey factory in Dublin. Not great, not bad, just meh.

Big old masher.

At the end of the tour you have to watch a really lameass video showing All the Great Drinks You Can Make With Jameson's whiskey - really. I felt like Ralphie in A Christmas Story, "A crummy commercial". At least Dave was selected to do a special free whiskey tasting at the end of the tour, so that made us feel a little better about participating in the blatant brand of whiskey consumerism they were selling there.

I was so proud, he passed and got a certificate. That will go right on the resume.

It was pouring down rain (shocking) when we left the distillery, so we went to a movie (Spiderman - our choices were very limited people). Luckily the theater had a FULL BAR, which helped make the movie a bit more palatable.

Yup, a bar in the theater. I love this country, but still wish it was a bit warmer.

We luckily had a few sunny days this week and on one of them, we rode a pair of Dublin Bikes out to Howth. I am pretty sure we are the only assholes to have ever taken those 50lb giant hulking bikes the 10+ miles along the coast north of Dublin to Howth. Still, it was a great ride - mostly along a dedicated bike path. Sweet.

Once in Howth we had a lingering seafood lunch (look at those oysters, yum). Dave picked the restaurant, Octopussy......I am serious, that's actually what it was called.

That is Howth, there in the background.

You can feed these dudes, aren't they cute.

And the requisite old church seeing to be done.

The whole purpose of this Dublin trip was to see Florence and the Machine and Snow Patrol at a music festival in Phoenix Park.

OK for those who do not know, summer music festivals are big over here. They are sometimes several days long and involve loads of bands playing throughout the entire day(s). At the more remote festivals (like Glastonbury or the Isle of Wight festival), you camp out in tents - which sounds to me like the worst thing ever. I love camping but not where rain, lots of noise (I need my beauty rest), people vomiting, overcrowded port-o-potties, or triathlons are involved (sorry Wildflower). People also dress up in these redic outfits with lots of jewelry, headbands, and feathered hats - like those douchebags in the photo there on the right. Hello, it is freezing in the UK and Ireland people, those short shorts and tank tops are not waterproof or frost-proof.

In any case, I brought my favorite red wellies, raincoat, gloves, and wool socks - so I was set for the shitty rainy summer concert weather. This poor girl in the leather leggings and suede heels was NOT.

I am quite sure those shoes will not recover.

Who doesn't love a "summer" music festival.

It got ugly out there.

But it was all worth it for Florence. That woman is my hero, she is amazing!

We are off to ROME this coming weekend. We meeting some friends who will be traveling in Rome, and what's the point of living over here if you can't just dash off to Rome for a weekend.

Then we are headed to France for a week so Dave can work and I can take French classes. I am SORELY lacking in my language classes lately. I've got some ground to make up. Plus that week is my B-day so email me any restaurant recommendations for Paris!!!!

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