Day 3 in Dublin

Dublin Travel Blog

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Iarlaith takes Lia to school- isn't he a handsome lad!

We really enjoyed the Dublin pub named the Brazen Head.  It's in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the oldest pub- 12th century!  Wow!


The kids had a fantastic time at the schools.  Lia was swarmed by cute little girls asking her questions, one of whom was wearing a pink NY ball cap.  Lia stayed an hour with kind Iarlaith ("Ear la") as her guide and he was delighted when his teacher excluded him from homework, so he could have more time to visit his guest. 


Lia stayed an hour at the school and really felt special with questions about Texas, the weather, what pop songs and TV shows she watches, etc.

Siobhra (adorable!) at school
 It was a cultural exchange that was delightful. They only speak Gaelic at the school except during English class. 


Irish (Gaelic) and English are the two national languages and all signs have Gaelic first and then English.  It's a beautiful language, but initially challenging to figure out the sounds of the letters.


Charles went to school with Mr. Kieran, who is an Art teacher at a secondary (high) school.  He was given a buddy with nearly identical first and last names and from Florida! How neat is that?  In Charles' essay today about his experience at school, Charles talked of being a bit intimidated while overhearing the boys whispering about a visitor from America.  Then one kid came up and asked him if he was the American visitor, and when Charles responded affirmatively, he was swarmed with boys asking questions - they were really nice and he went to several classes with his buddy.

Lia has fun at school with Iarlaith and new friends


Charles had a terrific experience and the English teacher, who looked just like Kathleen O'Neill from home Charles said, later reported to Kieran that Charles was quite a gentleman.


Jazy went with Orla's beautiful niece, Ashling, who is a senior at the girls' school across the street from the boys' school.  She had such a wonderful time that they texted Orla at lunch to see if she could stay the whole day. 


Jazy most enjoyed Irish class and returned to the camper with a paragraph about herself in Irish (with translation).  She learned nutrition (her favorite topic) from their Biology class, but admitted to being lost on their senior math.

Christ Church, Dublin
  Jazy was really jazzed about getting to visit a school in Ireland- that was a highlight of their year of travel, for sure.  Orla and Kieran were so smart to think of that and then make it happen for the kids!


We washed clothes in Orla's washer and set the dial at 60 as instructed, but kept returning after an hour to find it still going, and going, and going... finally, I checked with Orla and learned that 60 is the temperature setting (in Celsius), not the timer!  The clothes washed for probably 2 hours, but came out nearly dry and looked cleaner than new.  Charles was amazed too- so that says something! 


They do not have a dryer, which is an energy-conscious move, not economic.  I won't go on about how gorgeous the house is that they had built, with exquisite woodwork, iron fireplaces, private guest quarters, and multi-storied walls of glass windows that flood bright-colored rooms with sunshine.  Or how nice their RV is which we are so pleased to use.

  Charles and I just thought that *not* having a dryer was a really fascinating concept!  Our clothes are now drying in the house on an very large, well-balanced, folding drying rack and they were almost dry within a couple hours (before our pub run).  I love seeing how things are different here and getting ideas.


Here's another idea (Virginia, you'll love this):  Kieran uses a large green plastic watering can to fill the RV water tank from a water source if it is in a less-than-convenient place.  Isn't that smart?  It's got a built-in funnel on it and is well-balanced.  Neat idea!


We saw the famous stud farms and racetracks near where they live- gorgeous horses! 


Orla and Kieran were great sports driving all of us in two cars into Dublin, which took about 45 minutes.  I felt bad having suggested dinner in town, given how far it was and considering the nice small towns around where they live in Kildare were charming as well and likely had good pubs.

Brazen Head fun


But they were easygoing and since Orla had a few errands to run, Kieran showed Jazy and me the Dublin campground we are headed to tomorrow.  He also took us on a little Dublin tour: drove us past the Guinness Factory and the medieval neighborhood of The Liberties, walked us beside the Liffey River, and offered details of a private native Dubliner, like the bronze inserts in the sidewalk showed items that were dug up of the Nordic city excavated under Dublin!  And Dublin at sunset- awesome!


I mentioned the pub which was great fun- the Behans are just wonderful people.  Their kids are delightful, happy, smart, too cute for words, and fun with sparkling eyes.  Our kids just love to play together- we adore them all.  We really have gotten far more out of this exchange than just an RV to use. 


Orla, by the way is a real world traveler, having spent a work-exchange year in Australia.  After traversing Malaysia and Thailand on the way home from Australia, when no travel mates wanted to go to China with her, she went alone!  Orla toured China for a month by herself soon after the Tiennamen Square events!  See why I love her?  She and Kieran spent another month in China for their honeymoon.  Not to mention the four years they've spent touring Europe for summers in their Motorhome.  Impressive folks, these Behans.


Well I still have lack of sleep from going to bed too late (I wish I could blame jet lag), so I better stop.  I did find my adapter and managed to get my computer battery charged- victorious!


Did I mention that we won the rugby game?!  This is huge!  We haven't won the Six Nations Championship since 1948!  I must get an Irish rugby jersey.  It was a nailbiting, thrilling finish.  What a way to start our tour of Ireland.  We also won the Boxing Day finals that same night, so there were many happy, tired people on Sunday. 


Sunday was also Mother's Day here in Ireland!  March 22nd this year.  It is hard to believe that was just yesterday!  I helped make a first-week itinerary for the Behans, suggesting they save New Orleans for the end of the trip if they really feel compelled, since it is out of the way for their other National Park, wild west travels.  I don't think they want to run that much in two months.  I'm suggesting the Utah Circle Tour with the Grand Canyon, TX Hill Country, and NM and CO beauty, with Yellowstone if there's time. 


There's Ned on instant chat- gotta run!


azsalsa says:
Just another reason to join Travbuddy....look at all the great people you have met! This is a real Cinderella story, without the ugly stepsisters!
Posted on: Apr 20, 2009
N_loves_T says:
This all sounds great! The school idea was brilliant and I'm so happy the kids enjoyed it so much. And glad you're enjoying it all so much. Can't wait to hear more!

Posted on: Mar 24, 2009
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Iarlaith takes Lia to school- isn…
Iarlaith takes Lia to school- isn…
Siobhra (adorable!) at school
Siobhra (adorable!) at school
Lia has fun at school with Iarlait…
Lia has fun at school with Iarlai…
Christ Church, Dublin
Christ Church, Dublin
Brazen Head fun
Brazen Head fun
photo by: fransglobal