So this weekend I decided to venture away from what I now consider, my indigenous land, and travel to the incredible city of Dublin for St.Patrick’s Day. Contrary to what I, and I assume many others believe, the correct diminutive form isn’t St. Patty’s but rather St. Paddy’s. Apparently Patty, is a shortened version for Patricia or another word for a burger, but it is definitely not something you would call a fellow! St. Paddy’s day in Dublin has always been a must on my bucket-list, and to actually have the means to do it, I knew I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. Although not immediately discernible from my physical appearance, I do have a wee bit of Irish in me.
The weekend started with what could only be described as the quickest flight known to man. I felt that the minute we reached maximum altitude the flight crew was already telling us to prepare for landing. If only all flights could be that smooth and effortless! Upon arriving in Dublin we got a taste of some Irish hospitality, as well as a taste of some of Ireland’s most laudable commodity. No ladies and gentleman, not the McDonald’s Shamrock Shake, but rather the homegrown Guinness brew. A corn beef and potato meal with the dark lager that is Ireland’s pride and joy, we were in a food coma.
Our first day was jam packed with activities! At the top of my list was to visit the venerable Trinity College and the indescribably beautiful Old Library. Needless to say the visit did not disappoint. Upon visiting the college green and walking around campus I immediately envisioned myself attending undergrad there, surrounded by the incredible buildings. I was reminded of my campus visit to Yale (I know, a little overreaching). The similarities between the two campuses were striking, and I wished that my intellectual prowess was slightly more impressive so that I could’ve been an eligible and appealing applicant.
The library was absolutely stunning. It was so archaic and enchanting; I may have even twirled around once to soak in my Beauty and the Beast moment. I know it’s corny to be referencing Disney at the mature age of 21, but I truly felt like I opened the doors to another dimension when I entered that book room.
We also visited the Temple Bar District, undoubtedly the most vivacious sector of Dublin. This area was lined with pubs and shops of a multitude of colors and every corner you turned had some source of entertainment; in my case, a Mario and Luigi duo playing what appears to be some kind of bassoon. This section was overrun by tourists, but the jovial ambiance was guaranteed to put a smile on anyone’s face. I was really tempted to start up the “T” for Temple “U” chant, but refrained from doing so in order to avoid conspicuously identifying myself as a tourist!
On Sunday, we hopped on a train and decided to get away from the hustle and bustle of urban life. We visited this little seaside town called Howth, where we devoured some of the most scrumptious seafood chowder imaginable. Believe it or not, I think we also may have located Nessie, the infamous Lochness monster. Granted we were in Ireland, but for all I know it could’ve very well have been migratory season for this Scottish native. Lurking in the water was this black creature, an ominous being who was glaring at me with his/her one white pupil-absent eye. Upon further analysis, we concluded that it was indeed just a horrifying seal, but quite the monstrosity if you ask me. Words cannot express the indelible scars seeing this creature has left on me.
The weekend was an absolute adventure, as has been the case with the study abroad experience as a whole. My only regret is not singing some U2 karaoke at a Dublin bar; I think the audience would’ve had just enough alcohol in them to actually enjoy the performance! Until next time!