With the event behind us, Matt, Danny, Rowan, Brandon and I headed to Dublin, Ireland to fit in some last minute sites and culture before heading home. We had to leave early in the morning to catch our train to the airport where Danny and I met up Matt and Brandon who took a later train. Rowan had a different agenda and met up with us later in the afternoon.
We took off without incident and had a chance to relax before a day of touring Dublin. Unfortunately I had developed heel bursitis based solely on Google and my symptoms (I’ll be checked by a doc back home) so my day started with significant pain and it only worsened. I managed 25k steps yesterday and each step was excruciating. As I write this the morning after with one day to go, my will to take in the experience is all that allows me move upright. I have genuine flashbacks to my trench foot experience in the Marine Corps and willing myself forward. But enough of that, we had fun so let’s check it out!
Arrival in Ireland
We were very hungry so that needed to be corrected immediately! We took a couple of turns and found this back alley cafe, almost like a tent, and decided to give it a try. I can’t recommend this place highly enough! The daily soup and sandwich combo was exquisite!
With no agenda in mind, we just walked a few blocks and were suddenly at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. I might return there later as it is Good Friday/Passover and I’m sure decorated to the nines. It may not be quite as impressive as the Cologne Cathedral, but certainly as much if not more iconic!
A few blocks later and we were at Christ Church Cathedral! I took a lot of pics but here are a few. I couldn’t upload the panoramic unfortunately but it was a site to behold!
From there we headed down a road and marveled at the architecture and quaint feeling of the whole area. We took a right at one point to “cut through” to another area and were suddenly in the courtyard of the Castle of Dublin!
Our one goal for the day was to take the Jameson tour of the old distillery. We were not disappointed as this museum was rich in history, and taught us how to distinguish between whiskey types. I’ve always had a preference for Jameson but I never realized why until now! I just figured it was my Irish roots, haha.
On the way to meet up with Rowan for dinner, we stumbled across a church with a very orange hue to the brickwork (sorry didn’t get the name). Then we saw a large number of young people sitting by the canal laughing and drinking and wondered why that spot in particular was so popular. Turns out there were these massive beautiful swans that migrate for winter and will likely be leaving soon. You can sort of see them in the picture.
Dinner was at an Italian restaurant where the everything was made fresh that afternoon. We thoroughly enjoyed the food and dinner conversations, especially recounting Rowan’s experiences making it to that point in time from Rotterdam!
As we walked back to our hotel, I realized that Matt, Danny, and Brandon were all leaving for home in the morning so I took one last pic. What an adventure we have had! Four grown men traveled across Europe together for a week much like young men do at the start of their adult lives. We laughed the entire way and it will take weeks to process all we have done together. Our work carried us through Mendix World where we networked with peers we have spoken to on the phone so many times before but never shook hands until this week. We were there when the announcements were made that will most impact us for the next few years. But most of all, we’ve come out the other side best of friends.
Rowan and I have one more day in Dublin to take in all we can. I’ll hobble along as best I can and rest when I get home. I’m excited to see my family again; it’s been very long since I’ve hugged them all. I’m not sure if I’ll post a recap of today or not, but I’ll leave now to go see what I can find!