Wrapping up 27 hours of pretty much non-stop travel and damn am I tired. It takes its toll, and I’m only about an hour from bed as I write this (unless I did something drastically wrong and wind up in London or something.) Left yesterday morning from Seattle at 11am headed for Dublin. With the time change, and a short layover in Philadelphia, I took my first step onto Irish soil about 12:45am Seattle time (or almost 9am in Dublin).
Having a few hours to kill, I took the bus to town, dropped my bag at a hotel, and went for a walk around the city center. Figured I may as well do the quick tour of Trinity College and see the Book of Kells while I was dying to just walk around after being crammed in a coach US Airways seat for the last 13 hours.
I gotta say, the college is magnificent with many of the buildings 200, 300, and even 400 years old. It’s very beautiful and pretty close to what I imagined. This is the most prestigious university in all of Ireland and the most difficult to get into. Unfortunately, the tour was quite dull, and I was looking forward to it ending so I could check out the book of Kells, which curiously enough, I was quite interested in seeing. After waiting about 25 minutes in line, I finally reached it, and whomp-whomp-whomp….it’s an old book. Old books actually. The most interesting part is the hand painted “illuminations”, however, only one of the books was even open to one of those pages. I’d skip it if you were in Dublin. The pictures on the internet are 100x better than the real thing if you ask me.
However, what was cool was the long room library where they have ancient books from floor to ceiling. Two floors worth! The wonderful aged musty smell was overpowering when you walk in. It just smells like “old”. Looks like something out of Harry Potter and Hogwarts. All these books being centuries old was pretty impressive, and it was interesting to note they are all in Latin making them pretty much useless to anyone these days. Not to mention the vast majority of the knowledge contained in them has been disproved by modern science, so not only can most people not read them, but if you could, you wouldn’t learn anything anyways. The room was still very cool. I’ll certainly remember it over the Book of Kells.
By the time I got to the ferry port to cross the Irish Sea, fatigue was starting to set in. Really didn’t sleep much. Maybe a few hours since I’ve left, but you don’t really sleep. I dozed on the ferry and the seas were pretty rough. Not for those prone to seasickness.
Anyways, got through that about 4:50pm Dublin time and am now train hoping to Derby which is located in the center of England. I love these British trains. And what’s going to wind up being about a 4 hour train trip was really great. I didn’t realize I was going to Wales when I rode the ferry over to Holyhead so the first hour and a half of the train ride was along the north coast winding through the Welsh countryside. It was so serene and beautiful. By far, my favorite part of the last 24 hours!
Almost to Derby now though and it’s getting dark. This will be my homebase for the next few days as I’m here for the annual Download Festival. One of the biggest hard rock & metal festivals in the world. (It’s the best if you ask me.) I came for the first time last year and thought I had died and went to heaven for three days. I vowed to come back, and I can’t believe I’m actually here! I made it again and so excited to see Iron Maiden, Motorhead, Alice in Chains, and tons of other bands. Three days of metal mayhem and it’s bliss baby. Gotta get me rest!!
This trains moving pretty slowly, not sure why. I’m expecting to pull into Derby (again, that’s if I’m on the right train. I think I am. ) in about an hour. My hotel is just steps from the train station and I’m going to crash hard. Hope I can find some energy to upload this tonight when I get there.
That’s it for now kiddies. I’ll write more soon.
p.s. I made it. I’m in my room. Now for a much need shower and some Zzzzzzzz’s.