Last night in Dublin was funner than expected. I ended up going out with Ezra from New York for a celebratory pint–his last in Dublin, and my first. Of course we had a Guinness, but I stole a few Smithwicks beer coasters just to round things out.
The bartender was a lot of fun. We were talking about Southwest Ireland, the Dingle Peninsula and the Ring of Kerry. “Stop, stop,” he says, “it’s so beautiful I’m going to start crying thinking about it.” He has a place on the Kerry Peninsula–lucky bastard–and spends as much time as he can out there. That made me feel better about Dublin.
This morning I got up in time to get the faster bus to Belfast and got here by 11.30. Then of course I couldn’t find Paddys Palace, or Belfast Palace as i discovered it’s really called. I ended up walking past it twice, though, so I can’t even complain that I was in wrong area.
After Dublin, I was afraid Belfast would fall flat but it doesn’t. I like this city a lot. WHile Dublin feels like it’s on the down and out, Belfast is only moving up in the world. There is construction everywhere, and not just Dublin-type construction where the cranes are still there but they ran out of funding ot complete the building–everything is being renovated, remodeled, new buildings going up everywhere.
And it’s cheap. I bought lunch and dinner at a Spar for £5.45. Yesterday in Dublin for the same thing I paid over ten euros. I broke a twenty on the room today, bought my food, and I still have change. That is really wonderful.
So technically this is my second or third day of traveling (if you count the day I flew over) but it feels like I’ve been doing this forever. I talked to a million people last night. Maybe less but you get the idea.
Out of those million people, only three were Americans. Two of them were in school here and one is a photographer and was doing an assignment in Geneva. Lucky.
The two girls I talked to had these strange, not-really-British, not-really-Australian accents. They sounded like you do when you’re trying to make a funny british accent and sound as sophisticated as possible. Or whatever. I thought it was really amusing. And then today when I was talking to the bus people, trying to buy my ticket to Edinburgh, I found myself unconsciously adding a little lilt on the end of words. My American accent sounds so…blah…compared to everyone else. But I am not going to be one of those silly girls with their fake accents. I can’t help it! It just happens!
Anyways, I leave at 6.30 tomorrow morning for Edinburgh. Woohoo.