Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Back from Dublin

Dublin - Seal of the City Yesterday I returned from Dublin, land of shamrocks, pubs, and Guinness beer. I spent a couple nights at the Avalon House Hostel, a very nice place to stay. While I was in Dublin, I visited several churches (including Dublin's two Anglican cathedrals), walked around the Temple Bar (a cultural part of town with lots of pubs), stopped by Dublinia (a Viking and medieval 'heritage centre'), explored Dublin Castle, took a bus tour through town, and stopped at the Guinness Storehouse.

I have a few pictures available on Flickr.

(That link should work. If not, go to and click the Dublin, Ireland set.)

A fewpictures here, though, before you try and wade through the tons of pictures on Flickr.

Dublin - Seal of the City This is Temple Bar, located in the Temple Bar. Confused?
Temple Bar is a pub in the area of town known as Temple Bar. (I suppose it's like me opening a pub called Windsor and locate it here in Windsor.) Anyway, it's evidently a rather famous pub.

Dublin - Seal of the CityI also went to Trinity College to look at the Book of Kells, a beautiful illustrated manuscript from about 800 AD. (The picture is actually of the outside of the Trinity College Library - I couldn't take pictures inside.) I also went through the Long Hall, a library housing over 200,000 old books. There's a good page here that allows you to look around the library.

Dublin - Seal of the CityOne of Dublin's main streets is O'Connell Street. There are lots of stores and things like that, as well as a large grassy median and sculptures, like this one. I may not know how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, but I know how many rabbits can dance on the tip of an anvil. Evidently, one.

There is also a big spire.

Dublin - Seal of the CityAnother statue commemmorates Daniel O'Connell, a campaigner for Catholic rights and Irish independence. If you look closely you can see bullet holes - reminders of Ireland's Civil War. (Look at her elbow.)

Dublin - Seal of the CityA visit to Dublin Castle included a tour of the State Apartments, including the Throne Room (from the time of King William III) and St. Patrick's Hall - where Ireland's presidents are inaugurated. I also visited the Royal Chapel and the Garda Museum - the museum of the history of policing in Ireland.

Dublin - Seal of the CityThe picture shown is of a woman holding the scales of justice - a statue dating from when the British controlled Ireland. Her back is to the city and she is not blindfolded - two facts not lost on the Irish. Also, she is raising a forefinger - when it rained, the water dripped from her finger into one of the scales, making it unbalanced. They have since drilled a hole in the bottom for the rain to drain through.

Dublin - Seal of the CityBefore I visited the nearby cathedral, I went to Dublinia, a Viking and medieval heritage center. It has sights, sounds, and smells from medieval times. Plus, I learned that Vikings used moss as toilet paper. Really.

Dublin - Seal of the CityAfter learning about Viking toilet habits, I climbed the stairs to the tower for a view of Dublin.

Dublin - Seal of the CityNext, I visited Christ Church Cathedral, one of two Anglican cathedrals in Dublin. (And they are only three blocks apart - something to do with the old walls of the city.) Here, I saw this mummified car and rat. It seems that they fell into one of the organ pipes and became trapped.

Dublin - Seal of the CityI also went to St. Patrick's Cathedral. It was here that Jonathan Swift was Dean from 1713 to 1745.

Dublin - Seal of the CityFinally, since I was in Dublin, I went to the Guinness Storehouse, a massive shrine to anything and everything related to the beer. It is actually an interesting time - you wind your way to the top of the building and end up at the Gravity Bar with its glass-windowed views of Dublin.

Dublin - Seal of the CityI thought this statue was nice. The Millenium Child statue evidently shows these poor boys desperately trying to drag their sister back down to earth as she somehow just floats away. Or something like that.

Well, that's the trip in a very small nutshell. As I said, tons more pictures are available on Flickr - including lots of pattern pictures I took for school.


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