I sit here in the airport, carrying only the clothes on my back. I’m seriously questioning what I’m getting myself into. I know it’s a once in a lifetime trip, but that might only be because my body can only handle it once. 34 hours, 8 friends, countless beers… St. Patrick’s Day in the capital of Ireland. I’ll keep you updated.
Our early flight lands in Dublin, the airport is filled with crowds of people clad in green, white, and orange, the colours of the Irish flag. There are four of us that got tickets for the early flight and we are here! We’ll meet the other four flying in on the second flight this afternoon. I know the first stop that we have to make: to get some Irish apparel. We stick out like a sore thumb.
We found a dollar store selling hats, flags, scarves and face paint! Dan and I got the girls to paint our faces, and they got each other to paint their faces, because… let’s face it. We would’ve butchered it. Getting ready for the parade, and the crowds are crazy everywhere!
I scratched my cheek and smeared the Irish stripes painted on 8 minutes ago. 8 minutes. Good job me.
First Guinness of the day. Tastes as good as I remember it. Decided that the parade was way too long to stand through all of it. We heard that it lasts for 3 hours! Besides, we were getting thirsty! Of course, you can never just drink one Guinness, so Dan and I had our second of the day here as well.
Decided that drinking in pubs all day would get unnecessarily pricey. Learned that the ozzies call the liquor store a “Bottle-O”, and now we’re on the quest for this mythical place.
Turns out that nowhere in Dublin is allowed to start selling liquor outside of pubs until 4:00pm, you know… to prevent shenanigans. Probably a good call, as we would be partaking in those very shenanigans. In the meantime, we’ve found our next target: a pub by a cute little bridge, selling pitchers of Tennetts for 12 euros. Dan and I split one while I drank another Guinness. The four of us all took our friendship to a new level while empathizing about school, siblings, and life in general.
Finally got alcohol from somewhere other than a pub. We bought two bottles of wine and found a… quaint… little back alley to consume our beverages. We met a group of people with the same idea, but the entire group was dispersed once a police car decided to drive down this particular alley. All three paper-bagged bottles (both of our wines and their Buckfast) were set on the pavement as we left to hide in the crowds. Once the car had safely passed, we returned to our paper bags and finished them in peace, along with the other group’s Buckfast, as they didn’t return for it.
Next logical stop after drinks in an alley? Of course to another pub, where we can drink a little more… legally. This pub was called O’Donohues, and ended up being our ‘home base’ for the rest of the night. One more Guinness here before I decided to go for a wander around town. You know, just a responsible, sober decision that completely made sense in my mind at the time. It’s a nice night out!
Looking through O’Donohues to find the gang. My eyes are peeled for either Dan, Emily or Lisa, but haven’t found any of them! We have also just got news that the second crew are just about to get to our bar and we are excited for them to join the festivities!
Found the rest of the crew! The four on the later flight were Illek, Mary, Devon, and Paulina. I met up with them and now our next task is to find the rest of the original crew, supposedly in the bar that I’ve been searching in for an hour.
Turns out that there are two different O’Donohues in Dublin. Go figure. It turns out that after my little night walk, I ended up at the wrong O’Donohues, and for ‘some odd reason’ I didn’t realize that this was a different bar. I am now back at our home base with the whole 8 person gang! This calls for a celebration! I’m going to grab another Guinness.
After a great day of drinking and being honorarily Irish, we are ready for sleep. When we left Glasgow this morning, Mary, Dan and I didn’t have accommodation booked for tonight. We had a few plans in the works. We could pull an all-nighter, but staying up tomorrow would be real rough, as our flight is at 8:00pm. We could employ a para-trooping method, which, if you don’t know what this is, ask me about it sometime. We could sleep in a 24-hour diner. Thanks to the more responsible portion of our group, we’re able to stay with them in their hotel! We crammed 8 people in a room meant for 2 adults and 2 kids. I’d say that’s an accomplishment more than anything!
DAY 2 (March 18th)
It wasn’t until this morning that I realized how ridiculously nice this hotel was. Let me put this into perspective by telling you that there’s a helicopter on the front lawn, a Bentley sitting out front, and as we look around the setting of our free breakfast, we can spot a mirror framed solely out of ivory. Just like yesterday, we are sticking out like sore thumbs. We are leaving the hotel clad in our Irish flags, big poofy hats and smudged face paint amidst the other guests in suits and dresses.
After a morning of exploring the city, I bet you can’t guess where we have decided to sit down for the rest of our time in the city! Yup, a pub. Needless to say, there isn’t too many drinks around the table, but I’ll have you know that my Guinness is sitting proudly in front of me. There is a 6 Nations rugby game on this afternoon: Ireland vs. England. This is the last game of the tournament, between the top two teams. Go Ireland!
This is most likely going to be my last entry, as we sit in the airport waiting for the plane! Ireland survived England and won the rugby game, and we survived Dublin for St. Patty’s Day 2017. My body is begging me to never do this again, but I’m reassuring it that this was an unavoidable necessity. Check one off the bucket list!