Ireland was one of the countries kind of close to the Netherlands that I somehow had never been to. Well, now I have! My Mom and me went to Dublin for a short vacation last week. Our hotel, the Marine Hotel, was outside the city, up north near Howth. Both my Mom and me found the hotel to be further away from the city than we expected. But luckily the bus ride to the center was an easy (and beautiful!) one. It took us about 30 minutes to get to Abbey Street. So we did that for three days and explored the city. We explored the grounds of Trinity College, enjoyed a lunch concert there, visited an exhibition of Seamus Heaney, the emigration museum and did some shopping. We also went to the Temple Bar district and of course had a pint of Guinness there. I remember having a Guinness a couple of years ago and not liking it, but this time I loved it!
On the third day in Dublin city centre we saw the Riverdance 25th anniversary show and oh my, it was the best. First of all, the Gaiety Theatre, where the show was performed, was beautiful. We sat all the way in the back, which was fine, we could see everything perfectly fine. My Mom has been a fan of Riverdance ever since I can remember. When I was little, she had a show recorded on tape, and I’ve seen it countless times and remember admiring the dancers so much. For some reason, watching the real thing made me want to cry. It was so nostalgic, enchanting, beautiful, I have no words to describe it. Also, the musicians of the show were SO GOOD. Especially the drummer/percussionist, Mark Alfred, was a genius, I felt like even though he didn’t get a minute of rest during the show, he didn’t drop a single beat.
There were also two American guest tap dancers, who danced during a track about Irish people emigrating to America. Their dancing and movements were out of this world. I have never seen anyone move their feet so fast. If you still thought tap dancing can’t be sexy, watch these guys, you’ll change your opinion in a heartbeat. When the show was over, we kind of took a while to exit the building. We walked around it onto Grafton Street and my heart stopped because you know who I saw? Those two American tap dancers casually walking onto the street! They were like 2 meters away from me. Me, totally starstruck, said something dumb before I knew it; ‘Are you the dancers?’ (*face palm* of course they are). They were like ‘Yeah, yeah’. I was a total grandma because after that I put up both of my thumbs and said to them ‘You guys were awesome!’, with a HUGE smile. Oh well, at least I meant it. They thanked me and walked on 😉
The next day was our last full day and we spent it in the area of our hotel. Which was another highlight. If you ever go to Dublin, I would strongly advise you to take bus number H3 to Howth Summit. From there on you can take an 1/1,5 hour hike to Howth, a lovely little fishing town. The hike is one of the most beautiful ones I ever did (and not hard at all), since you’re walking on top of the cliffs. Views are spectacular. Also, when we were there the hills were in bloom with with little purple and yellow flowers. We we got to Howth we had some really good fish and chips which were a challenge to eat since we were competing with seagulls, who, when you didn’t pay attention for a second, would attack from above and snatch the fish right out of your hands.
Our short trip was lovely and I really hope to see more of Ireland one day, especially the countryside.