Day 2 in Dublin was just perfect! The weather was abnormally warm and sunny. Yes, you read it right, Sunny! It was just beautiful all day, and we made our way around Dublin and the buses with ease.
We started our morning by enjoying a lovely traditional Irish breakfast at our B&B, The Avoca House. This consisted of homemade sausages, bacon, egg, cooked mushrooms & tomato, black pudding, and toast with your choice of jams and marmalades. Delicious!
There was a nice young English couple from Manchester who kindly explained to us what black pudding is, and let’s just say I should have tried it before I asked. 😖 It tasted ok, but I couldn’t get past what it’s made of once I knew. I’ll spare you, and you can look it up yourself.
After breakfast we enjoyed a nice long conversation with our new English friends about American and English cultures and their differences. It was fun to discuss costs of living, political views on America from across the pond, & rules and lifestyle differences amongst cultures.
* Willow fell asleep on Dad while we chatted away with our new friends.
As we’ve had conversations with people on the bus, people passing out pamphlets on the street, and at the B&B, the more it seems that Catholicism is what most people claim as their religion of choice but as a part of passed down heritage and not necessarily as practice. The knowledge and conversations of Mary and her works are highly respected, whereas talks around Jesus and what he’s done is rarely discussed. Ryan and I were saying how we are glad we had a couple days to experience Dublin to gain some background and perspective on the religious culture here before we dive into the mission work. We hope it will help us be more effective in the days to come as we share the love of Jesus with the Irish.
After our nice chat we headed on our way down to city centre. We hopped off at O’Connell street again and made our way down Henry St towards the Jervis shopping area. There we found a Smyth’s Toys, which I had planned to visit in Belfast, but I was able to find one in Dublin!
We hopped into Smyth’s and found our way to the ‘In the Night Garden’ section. Our dear English friends, Duncan & Gloria, introduced us to the BBC children’s program and both of our kiddos love it! So we knew that was the one special thing we wanted to get for them on our trip. Emery made a special request for his favorite character, Makka Pakka, and we got Willow her favorite, Upsy Daisy. Seeing Willow’s face light up when Upsy Daisy talks is totally worthy it!
*Willow and Upsy Daisy
We then walked past the Temple Bar in Temple Bar, so we could get a picture of the famous pub.
Next we walked into a local jewelry shop to find a Claddagh ring. I started asking about local yarn places that may be around, and she told us about one she uses. She also crochets, and she showed me her beautiful sparkly silver icicles she’s making as Christmas tree ornaments. They were so beautiful. May have to find some sparkly yarn to make some of my own!
On our way to the yarn shop we passed St. Patrick’s Cathedral where they were holding the Bram Stoker’s Festival. There were lots of cool food carts, festival games and entertainment to enjoy. The cathedral was just beautiful.
*One of the main entrances to St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Take note of the shamrock details on the iron work on the door.
*Bram Stoker Festival fun.
We then trekked over to the local yarn shop the lady told us about. The owner, Rosemary, was so kind. She let me know that the Irish wool, although beautiful in color, is very course. She showed me how it works up in comparison to other wools. Although the cables of the Irish wool held a better shape, it tends to work up much stiffer. She explained that 40% is the largest amount of Irish wool per skein you would want to use for clothing. She said that 100% Irish wool is typically used for carpets. So I grabbed a nice neutral gray in the 40% wool and a nice royal purple blend in the wool that is spun and dyed in Ireland. I also grabbed a few really cute fox and wooden buttons. I can’t wait to get to crafting after we get home!
By this time Willow was hungry, and Rosemary was so kind to let us go upstairs in the loft to use her couch area for a few minutes. It was a nice gesture of local Irish hospitality.
*The Constant Knitter shop in Dublin city centre.
By this time it was about 4pm and the sun sets around 6pm, so we began to walk back the way we came and up towards Dublin Castle. We didn’t go inside, but we were able to enjoy the beautifully detailed architecture from the outside. Willow made friends with some students from Malaysia who were visiting the city.
On our trek back we walked past Christ’s Church. We decided to take the tour, and it was beautiful. From the beautiful stained glass to the tombs in the crypt, this church was just stunning.
From here we attempted to catch a bus back to Drumcondra, but on Sundays the buses don’t rotate through as frequently. So instead of waiting 30 minutes for the next bus, we decided to walk back to O’Connell street to catch one.
Once we were back in Drumcondra, we decided to have dinner at the local pub on the corner, Fagan’s. They had a lovely Al La Carte meal with choice of bacon (Ham), Roast Beef or Turkey, stuffing, gravy, choice of three vegetables, and three types of potatoes. Then I got an Irish Orange and Lemon flavored club soda, which was amazing!
* Fagan’s Pub
The pub atmosphere was really nice because it was welcoming and laid back. There were lots of families and friends gathered to visit over a nice meal. On our way out we ran into none other than Georgiana, the sweet older lady who helped us on the bus the day before (See Dublin Day 1.) She was kind enough to let me get a picture with her, even though she said her hair wasn’t at its best.
*Our Drumcondra friend, Georgiana
It was another lovely day in Dublin filled with friendly people and good memories!