My favorite picture of the Irish countryside

25 May 2009

I have officially vacated my home in Galway and am in the Charleville Lodge in Dublin... :'(
It was so hard to leave Galway today. Knowing that I'll never be in 85 Gort na Coiribe again really hit me a little harder than I thought. Katherine and Viviane walked me to the train station at 5 today. Preceeding this, I carried all of my luggage down the stairs of my house...4 one trip...I have scraped arms and a bunged up knee...
Saying goodbye to Katherine and Viviane was not all that easy. It's hard to go from seeing someone almost everyday to not knowing when the next time you'll meet will be. I can only hope and pray it's sooner rather than later!
I would definitely recommend taking the train - it may be more expensive, but it was a whole lot more comfortable than the bus! When I got here, the taxi driver didn't know where the hotel was - thank goodness for GPS! It wasn't very far from the train station at all. It's not the nicest place, but it's very quaint and has wireless and a double bed. That is all I need!
I celebrated my last night in Galway with a trip to the Crane Bar with Katherine and Viviane. In order to understand our obsession with the Crane Bar, I need to tell a little backstory.
In February, Katherine and I went with some other friends to this pub they knew - the Crane Bar. While there, we heard the most amazing song of our lives (not even kidding). That's when Katherine and I fell in love with a musician.
Progressing through the semester, we tried to recreate that night at the Crane for Kelsey and Viviane, but it never seemed to work out. Finally, when Kelsey's family came, we took them to the Crane...who was there, but our friend the amazing song writer! He sang one song that I thought was the original song I heard, but then realized same guy, different song. The next song, however, was that same awesome song! After singing this song, he went outside so we got Kelsey's brother to go after him and see if he had a cd. That's how we found out that his name is Steven and he's working on a cd and the best song in the world is "Oh Beautiful Sunshine." That's when Kelsey and Vivane fell in love with Steven.
Saturday, Katherine, Viviane, and I were walking down to the Spanish Arch, look over, and there is Steven, carrying his guitar. After maybe following him for a little while (which he may or may not have noticed) we quit our stalking and go down by the bay to watch the boats come in.
Last night was probably the best night of my life. Steven James (yes, we found out his last name) spoke to us. Conversation:
Katherine: Your music is really great! Do you have a CD?
Steven: Not for about 7 months...if I had it tonight I'd give it to you for not!
Viviane and Me: *mesmorized*
So, in Decemeber, Steven James should be the most searched for person on Google as a result of the four of us. I would encourage you to do the same.
Here are some YouTube links of the songs Viviane taped on her camera last night (just to prove to you how good he is):
*Names made up by Viviane except for "Oh Beautiful Sunshine"*
Oh Beautiful Sunshine
Patriot Games
Silver Street, Copper Lane

14 May 2009

Wow - it's been awhile! I wish I could say I haven't posted on here because I've been working on my papers, but we all know that didn't happen! Somehow time just slips away from me, and before I know it, I have an essay due in 4 days that I've barely started on. Here's what I have been doing the past few weeks.
Kelsey's people arrived 9 May. We proceeded to spend the next 4 days travelling and frequenting pubs. Our first trip was on 10 May when we went to the Aran Islands. If you ever get the chance, go! They are so beautiful. Viviane and I were very happy because we could get the gist of a lot of the signs that were in Irish. We did a biking tour around Inismore (the big island). If you can ride a bike, do this tour! I'm sure the bus tour is just as good, but I really enjoyed biking around. I did get to experience my first ferry ride on this trip. It made me a little queezy. . . the return trip was much better, probably because I slept for most of it.
On 12 May we went on a tour of Connemara. That was also very cool. The region has lots of mountains and many examples of what Irish life used to be like. It was very interesting to go on small mountain roads in a big tour bus. . . we met another bus once, and I wasn't sure we were both going to stay on the road!
Sadly, those are the only days we were doing anything all day so I don't know why I am so behind on my papers. Obviously, if they're not due in the next week, I don't pay attention to them! On another sad note, Kelsey went home the 13th. It was much harder to say goodbye than I anticipated. It's funny to think I've seen these people almost every day for the past 4 1/2 months, and now they're going to live roughly 1,500 miles from me. That's really depressing. It's going to be very bittersweet when my family comes because, although it will be exciting to see them, I know I have to go back with them. I'm not ready to leave Ireland. I'm just getting settled, and now, it's time to leave.