October 24, 2017. Dublin, Ireland.
Another interactive post! For most authentic results, play this song over and over until you lose the ability to sleep for three days.
After my disastrous layover in Boston, my master plan was to sleep all six hours of my first intercontinental flight and then spring into action, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, upon arriving in Dublin. But you know what they say, the best laid plans of mice and men… something. Once on the plane, I traded seats with some guy so he could sit next to his “wife” or whatever, which put me next to a fellow wanderer who was very excited about backpacking Ireland. She’d been to Europe four other times so she was giving me a lot of helpful advice and asking a battery of pertinent questions, which I appreciated, even as she kept aborting my attempts to get any sleep at all in my life ever. Then again, my engines run just south of nuclear at the most serene of times, so it’s unlikely I would’ve managed to get much sleep anyway while hurtling through the sky over shark-infested waters in a giant metal tube toward the land of my foremothers.
My irrepressibly inquisitive single-serving friend and I parted ways after customs in an appropriately Irish goodbye. Thereafter, I figured out how buses work. You give them money, and they scowl at you, and then you hit the button before it gets to your stop or they’ll drop you off at the next stop.
♫ In Dublin next arrived, I thought it such a pity
to be so soon deprived a view of this fine city ♫
Unfortunately, I got off the bus in center city at 6 AM, not realizing that Ireland doesn’t open until 8. I had booked in advanced at a hostel called The Four Courts which was so closed that there was a cage in front of the door. My options had narrowed.
So like the idiot protagonist of the aforementioned folk song, I decided to take a stroll. In the rain. For two hours. Desperate for breakfast.
There was one place, called The Pantry, that opened a half hour before the rest of Dublin. I skittered in and ordered the “jumbo” breakfast, whereupon I learned jumbo means something different here than it does in America. Still, they gave me a truly devastating quantity of pig flesh.
I hadn’t realized there were so many ways to turn pigs into breakfast. You see those little disks on the right? That’s fried blood. It’s alleged that it’s “pudding”, but they have to be aware of the other kind of pudding, that rarely contains blood. I believe this known colloquially as “taking the piss”. And then one lone hash brown, in solemn remembrance.
I paid then got terribly lost, but I’m told that’s part of the experience. You’d think it would be easy to orient yourself by the giant river that cuts through the middle of town. I kept losing it. Poor visibility from the rain, I imagine, and also everyone in a car was trying to kill everyone else in a car as loudly as possible.
Four or five miles later, I found this sign that I recognized from my failed attempt at getting into my hostel earlier.
I gained access this time by pressing a metal button. Apparently, I could have done that three hours prior too. You win this round, The Four Courts.
I’ve technically been awake for two days but my bed won’t be ready until 3 pm and there’s enough caffeine pounding through my bloodstream to reanimate a notably large corpse.
I think I’ll swing by the Tri-C and stock up on the trifecta: coffee, cadavers, and Christ. Y’all need anything?