Saturday, October 18, 2014

Too Much Nutella

Other people out for a walk.
My parents have come to town to visit (well, visit and play golf), so I’ve spent the last two days showing them around Dublin. It has been a great opportunity to test my knowledge of the city and guide them around the place I’ve been calling home the past few months. But it has also been a wonderful opportunity to do some touristing. Since I’m actually living in the city for a few months, and occasionally even going to classes here, I have tried to avoid tourist spots as much as possible. Instead, I have done my best (with varying degrees of success) to find lesser-known areas to explore. And while this has yielded some very cool discoveries – I can tell you seven different places to do your laundry – it means I haven’t made it to some of the places closest to campus. So, taking advantage of “showing the parents the town,” I have managed to check a few places off the list.

Let me just say: being a tourist is exhausting. First, you have to walk from the hotel to breakfast. Then you need to figure out what you’re going to do that day, which can be very stressful. After that there is more walking to reach the first site of the day. Then there is walking with your tour guide, followed by whatever extra exploring you want to do. And after that there is still more walking to the next location where the whole process is repeated. Due to the amount of Nutella in my diet at the moment, I’m really not prepared for that kind of exercise.

A rare moment of sun in Dublin.
They landed early Friday morning, so between the jet lag on their part and an early-morning fire alarm on mine, some caffeine was definitely in order. Tea and scones at Avoca roused all present and we headed off to the first of our touristy destinations of the day: The Book of Kells. The Book of Kells is perhaps the easiest thing to find of Trinity’s campus – there is always a substantial line outside the Old Library building to let you know exactly where to go and Friday was no exception. However, this let me use the single greatest perk of being at Trinity: every student gets in to see the book for free and gets to bring up to three guests and gets to skip the huge line. It really makes wading through endless hours of medieval bureaucracy worth it. The exhibit and book itself are stunning, an experience made all the sweeter by getting in ahead of the huge German tour group waiting outside.

The rest of the day was spent leisurely strolling around the City Centre. We had a lovely dinner that evening with a few of my friends before ending the night with a drink at a pub by campus. It was my first real ‘drink’ with my parents. Not as weird as expected, but definitely something I’m going to have to get used to.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Establishing Rhythms

An Average Day Abroad

01.07 – Finally fall asleep while watching fifth episode of Gilmore Girls.
08.35 – Wake up to first alarm. Fall asleep. 
08.40 – Wake up to second alarm. Fall asleep again.
08.43 – Wake up to passing DART train. Fall asleep again.
08.55 – Sleep through third alarm.
09.03 – Finally wake up. Shower. Get dressed.
09.15 – Check weather. Be very confused over Celsius. Change to Fahrenheit.
09.17 – Make toast with Nutella for breakfast.
09.18 – Feel guilty about having Nutella for breakfast everyday.
09.19 – Add more Nutella.
09.21 – Attempt to do the readings for the morning’s lecture. Finish last night’s episode of Gilmore Girls instead.
10.51 – Grab an apple (to ease the guilt of the Nutella) and run to class.
10.59 – Find seat in back of lecture hall. Listen to lecture.
11.00 – Return to room, intending to do translation for next class. Watch more Gilmore Girls.
12.30 – Make pasta for the hundredth time this week.
13.22 – Finally look at translations for class.
14.50 – Go to class. Spend 55 minutes hoping professor doesn’t ask about the letter I didn’t translate. 
15.03 – Return to room. Nap.
17.30 – Wake up, hungry, and make pasta for the hundred and first time this week.
18.15 – Actually do homework.
20.30 – Consider going out.
20.31 – Start watching Gilmore Girls.