Cultured and Refined

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Cultured and Refined

The Trinity College Library in Dublin

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Live music and the perfect pour… Dublin

Truth be told, Dublin was not a priority for me when I started thinking about a loose agenda for my trip this summer, the choice was made by my best good friend Jose (or Joe, when I’m not talking with a spanish accent).  In the end, Dublin was a great time, filled with live music, good drinks, and great people.

Staying in the famed Temple Bar area we were right in the middle of classic Dublin.  Starting with a big touristy pit stop in the Guinness Storehouse we learned how to pour the perfect pint.  The respect I have for the black beer went through the roof on that 2 hour trip, a placebo effect of sorts, considering at my core I am not a stout man.  We even got a certificate that now may be hanging on top of, or next to my college degrees.  The honeymoon period of being a Guinness expert lasted about an hour because the first bar we went to after the tour the bartender took us right back to reality, pouring the beer in a way that said, I dont care, we’re crowded and your tourists.  I demanded satisfaction… from someone else… who did not want to get into it with a big irish bartender…  He’s lucky I did not want to get my certificate wet, because I would have thrown it right in his face.

The live music was amazing, with the same backbone of songs for every set, but even with the repetition it did not lose its flair.  We were also able to catch an irish dance battle, that was similar to the lord of the dance guy from the late 90’s.  I was also called out from a band at one of the bars, after I told them I lived in Casablanca, they asked me if I had ever been to the irish pub in Casa, when I told them yes, and that the pub did not have Guinness on tap the guitarist gave me an approving “Obama Meme” nod, so I gladly took the best sip of beer I have had in recent memory.

***Free, Interesting, True, Sidenote of the day: For everyone who watched The Wire.  I always knew the Character Walon (bubbles sponsor from the last season) was a musician, but never much more than that.  In real life his name is Steve Earle and he wrote the song Galway Girl, which was a staple in the live music scene in Dublin.

The North Remembers, a tour of Trinity College Dublin

For the first time in 7 months I could speak english to just about everyone, no matter how strong the accent I was about to live on easy street for the next few days.  Hello Dublin!

I am always a fan of the immediate walking tour of a city, it gives you both confidence and much needed bearings on where everything is in relation to your hostel and the public transportation.  Our walking tour guide in Dublin was a girl named Emer, a strong, passionate, sassy little story teller.  The tour consisted of a showing us an old layout of a viking village, a few important churches, and various places where Irish revolutions were fought (and primarily lost).   The most intriguing part of the tour had to be the stop at Trinity College, known for its old library.

To spice up the regular tour information she asked if anyone watched Game of Thrones, most of the tour did, so she went on to tell us that King Joffrey goes to Trinity.   She saw my face go from having a great time to pure anger.  She figured that telling us he was actually “a good person” and that meeting him would “not be as bad as one would think” would change the mood, it did not.  I decided that if I stumbled across Joffrey that he was getting punched right in the liver and I would raise a stark flag on top of the campanile (bell tower).  Sadly, or luckily depending on how you look at it, I never came across the king, and had to get back to normal vacation mode.

The next day we spent the few euros to see the inside of the library.  The place was amazing, and although I have left some photographic evidence of the college, it does not do it justice.