Day 17: Perfect afternoon in Galway

Galway Travel Blog

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Got the earliest bus to Galway, but little did I know it takes 7 1/2 hours.  I woulda paid extra (not much, though) for a faster train service, but I'll hold off.  I'd like to say I didn't take a single train in all of the UK and Ireland ;)

I kept swaying in and out of consciousness, as the ride was pretty boring and uneventful.  The lovely Irish countryside is a lot fuglier 'round these here parts, boa.  I woulda slept even better were it not for two bus changes.  Sheesh!  At least the time spent in stations is negligible; it seems like the next bus is waiting like a relay racer to get handed the baton/passengers. But still.  Seven hours.  I've learned time is just as expensive as money on this trip, and this is my first real experience with that.

Settled into the Barnacles hostel right smack dab in the middle of the action (I'm quite impressed with the location, right in thespot where you wanna be).  Shops, pubs, and street musicians.  Quite lovely, really ;)  Found out four of the 12 bunkmates attend Wake Forest university (what a coincidence!).  On the other hand, I don't know how I feel about 4 East-Coasters in the same room for the next couple of nights.  Oh well.  Invited them all for a pub crawl later in the night, we'll see.

I had my first full-course sit-down restaurant meal today in the past 17 days.  Full Irish meal with chicken, garlic, mash(ed potatoes), carrots, coffee, and some apple pie to finish it off.  My stomach is in heaven. 

As I walked into the common TV room, guess who I saw sitting in front of the computer?  Miranda from Seattle that I met back in Edinburgh playing cards!  What a complete coincidence that we were in the same hostel at the same time, in another country.  With a familiar face, now I don't feel all that bad about maybe ditching out on dem Noo Yawkahs.  I watched her make dinner using the provided boiled water (the whole city's water supply is dangerously contaminated with Cryptosporidium bacteria), a thing of cabbage, and a pack of ramen noodles.  "Pick one vegetable, one pack of ramen, and then just cook them together!".  I like her style.  She's my personal librarian, too.  Last time in Scotland she "lent" me Alive, the story about the 16 Uruguayans that were stuck for 70 days in the Andes peaks, and this time she "lent" me Long Way Round, the story of Ewan McGregor and his friend Charley as they motorcycled all the way around the world, from London to New York "the long way".  There's only so many books you can carry, so I've adopted the process of passing my books down to the next person, seeing as how I refuse to throw a book away (unless it's a British recipe book, then I'm burning it).

Ended up rounding up two of the Wake Forest dudes and Miranda and grabbing a pint at the local bar, complete with a local fiddler and guitarist playing in the corner.  I've noticed here that bands don't really get a stage per se, maybe just a glorified corner with a mic and a sound system input.  Before I knew it the Wake Forest dudes had deserted us, so Miranda and I headed over to the Kings Head for some cool acoustic trad music and contemporary covers.  Totally up my alley.  They were really good and Miranda had the hots for one of the  guitar players.  The drummer looked like Orlando Bloom with a black ghetto beanie on.  The bass player shot the shit with us afterwards, and suggested we go watch them again tomorrow night for the band's original songs.  We forgot the name of the aforementioned pub halfway back to our hostel.  Meh. 

Slept alone, again.

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photo by: AleksandraEa