Dublin and Kilkenny

Sep 02

Dublin and Kilkenny

Yesterday we got up and set off for the Temple Bar to meet Tony and Theresa, Ryder’s friend Thomas’s parents, who were in Dublin to see the Notre Dame vs. Navy game! They told us to meet them at Temple Bar which turned out to be a HUGE avenue packed with people in green and blue drinking and shouting, general pre-game shenanigans. We weaved through the crowds, asking a police officer for directions, hoping there was an actual bar called Temple Bar. We were pointed in the right direction and ventured into the bar only to discover, to our dismay that it was a) packed to the brim with people, enough so it was hard to even move, and b) divided into about 5 main rooms and two outside areas! Right, it was like looking for a needle in a hay stack. We slowly scooted through the mass of bodies and had no luck. We exited the other side and talked about plunging back in when Ryder spotted Tony! Yay! They had moved to a little cafe just across the street to get out of the crowds!

We joined them, had some breakfast, and talked for about 2 hours having a fantastic time! Tony and Theresa where accompanied by Theresa’s brother and his wife. They were a very sweet couple and we had so much fun with all of them. Too soon it was time for them to leave and head over to the stadium. We said our goodbyes, wishing the visit could have lasted longer. As we made our way back down Temple Bar to hail a taxi, Ryder and I talked about finding tickets to go to the game. We had talked with two ladies the night that were staying across the hall from us at our hotel and who had two tickets they were willing to sell. Unfortunately the tickets weren’t seated together so we had declined the offer. I admitted regret to Ryder for not taking those tickets when we had the chance and then we both decided if we could find tickets we’d take them, after all when would we next be in Dublin and be able to see American football?

We were approached by two scalpers with tickets and bought tickets from the second guy. They just happened to be in the exact same section as Tony and Theresa!! We headed back to the hotel to drop off a few things, then on to the stadium!! We walked to the stadium from the hotel, weaving around the swelling crowds of green and blue. As fate would have it, we crossed a street and there they all were!! They were so excited to see us again and were as surprised as we were to discover the tickets coincided with their section of the stadium! All of us headed into the game then, passing a large procession of Navy students all dressed to the nines and waiting to enter the stadium.

We got a few drinks then took our seats, watching the proud display of the Navy as they processed out, sang the American and Ireland national anthems, and then came the coin toss. Everyone stood for the kickoff and with a deafening roar from the crowd the game was off! We had a grand time watching the first two quarters, but unfortunately, as the second quarter came to a close, it was apparent the Navy team didn’t show up for the game and were properly trounced by the Fighting Irish.

We left at halftime, saying good bye to our friends, picked up our luggage at the hotel and took a taxi to the train station. We caught the next train to Kilkenny, getting in at 5:30pm. We walked to our hotel from the station and deposited our luggage. We ventured out and grabbed some pizza for dinner, then went back to the room to skype with family before going to bed.

Today we woke up in time to eat the complimentary breakfast at our hotel. As it was Sunday today, almost every thing in town was closed. We walked down a few streets enjoying the quite hush of the downtown as it seemed most of the population was at church. We walked over to the Kilkenny Castle, walked around the grounds, then headed into a large craft center that sold local crafts. Nothing caught our fancy, but we did spend some time in a gold and silversmith’s shop talking to a very nice gal that designed some of the jewelry in the store. Afterward, we headed back to the main street and spent some time in a local bookstore. By the time we got out of the book store it was after one and the town seemed to wake up a bit with more people bustling around.

We saw a sign on the street for a pub called Hole in the Wall with a plethora of historic information about it on the sign. Our curiosity piqued, we walked down a narrow alley and into a very small and old looking bar. The owner just happened to be at the entrance and greeted us with the famous warm Irish hospitality. He took us on a tour of the pub which was built in the early 1500s as a house for a wealthy merchant in Kilkenny with ties to the Irish royalty. The owner had found the place derelict without a roof and filled with pigeons. He restored the roof and chipped the walls down to the original stone used to build the house. The upstairs afforded a wide room where he said they’ve had famous Irish singers and bands come play. After the tour, we bid our goodbyes and headed down the street to a little cafe for lunch.

After lunch, we walked around the town a bit more, looking for a hair salon that might be open as we are both in need of a hair cut! No such luck, it being a Sunday. We went back to the hotel and read a bit then went out to a pub for dinner and drinks. We skyped with family and are settling in for the night.


One comment

  1. Tawny Grossman /


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