The Emerald Isle.
Land of fair skinned, freckled red heads, of a language utterly devoid of Latin or Greek influence, and therefore nearly impossible to speak for the uninitiated. Of quite possibly the friendliest people I have ever encountered.
A land of such vast antiquity it is virtually impossible to grasp. A land that lives so snugly within it’s past, you barely notice it beyond the raucous nightly Bacchanalia.
The beautiful temporary abode: The Camden Court Hotel, included the ever necessary and always much loved pool and jaccuzi. And, located at the top of St Stephens Green, it provided perfect access to Dublin’s many places to eat, shop and play.
There are even two gay bars just steps from one another–the George (full of gay Irishmen and not a place to relax fir a couple of lezzie lassies) and the Dragon, (with a Beth Ditto-esque straight bar tender who was totally wonderful). We never made it across the river to Panty Bar, although it is supposed to be utterly entertaining.
After much walking, much fooding, and an unlikely amount of drinking by yours truly (yes, Guiness does taste better in Ireland) a train trip was in order.
Aboard the Dart, Irelands quick and simple Coastal train, we stopped in Howth (rhymes with both) for lunch at the Big Blue Cafe. Sitting by the window, looking over and into a ruined 11th century abbey, and out into a huge harbor that drifted into Dublin Bay, it was easy to feel like life was so, so simple. So easy and light.
A return trip South of Dublin to the village of Dalkey brought us there in the twighlight, where hot coffee and pastries were gobbled in an upstairs cozy, next door to one of Dalkeys seven castles. (Although, in my soo humble opinion, England did castles better).
The final day was a bus tour to The Hill of Tara and Newgrange. astoundingly ancient and impossibly beautiful, these sites are older than both Stonehenge and the Pyramids in Cairo by nearly 500 years.
Truly, mind boggling. Utterly, totally, spiritual. A place where the power of the earth is so heavy, so grounded, you can’t help but feel like a part of that eternal vastness.
A short, easy hop home. A one hour flight is surpassingly lovely.
Home is always good, especially when home precedes a trip to the US west coast by only a few weeks.