St. Patrick Better Not Be Claustrophobic

I feel like I ran nonstop the entire month of March.

Day 1 post spring break trip: I absolutely had to get busy doing laundry since I had pretty much no clean clothes left to wear. I ended up having two full loads, which is impressive when you consider that I don’t really have that many clothes in Ireland. This was the first time I have ever had dry clothes come from the Belgrove laundry room. Every other time, I’ve been forced to turn my bedroom and bathroom into huge driers where I hang my clothes everywhere and crank the heater up. After laundry, Kelly and I had to run into Dublin for some grocery shopping since we had no food. Ali came home later that night with Greg, who also goes to Purdue but is currently studying in London. We stayed up really late Monday night hanging out, which didn’t help me rest up after traveling but was worth it. I don’t think we got to bed until around 4. Ali was sleeping in my room for the week to make room for Greg, and we couldn’t stop laughing because we heard the morning birds chirping as we laid down and tried going to sleep.

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On Tuesday, we got up around 9 and got ready to head into Dublin for the St. Patrick’s Day festivities. We took a taxi in since buses weren’t running as usual. In Dublin, we met up with Mckenna and Jon who are also friends with Ali and were in Dublin as a part of a Purdue spring break trip. We found a spot to stand for the parade where we could see moderately well. By the end of it though, we had managed to squeeze up a little towards the front and were squished in the mob on O’Connell street.

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The parade was pretty abstract. I couldn’t tell you half of what I saw. There were a few bagpipe bands and a ton of American high school and college marching bands. I heard a guy next to me joke that “Americans come all the way to Dublin, just to watch Americans in the parade.” Beyond the marching bands, there were a lot of strange floats. My favourite parts were the gingerbread man with a terrifying face, the huge rubber duck, and woodland creature section. During the woodland part, dirt was thrown into the audience. I was far enough out of reach that I didn’t get hit, but Ali had dirt all in her hair She told em that she realized what was going on as the dirt was falling so she tucked her head. But, the girl in front of her looked up and got dirt all in her mouth and eyes.

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After the parade, we stopped by Trinity college for the Book of Kells. Jelly and I cut off from the group and stopped in Costa Coffee to get some caffeine to keep up going. We sat in the lawn area of Trinity since we weren’t quite sure where everyone else went. Jon walked out and saw us and said the rest of the group was inside in the gift shop. After finishing our coffee and going in, we kept peeking at Greg and Ali from around the displays buy they didn’t see us. We managed to follow behind Ali out without her noticing almost all the way back to the main sidewalk. Finally Greg turned around and saw us and said, “Oh hey! I didn’t know you were back!”

Next, we went to go find food, of course. We stopped at metro cafe where our server was super friendly and kept filling up our water. I got so used to paying for water over vacation as we ate our way around the world, that it was weird how freely we were being given water. It was a really cozy meal. We sat underneath heaters outside in their porch-like area, and I had a nice beef-stew with bread. Ali, Kelly, and I cut off from the rest of the group because they went back to the hotel to rest. We went to the Temple Bar area to see the huge St.Patrick’s day crowd, We ended up having to hold onto each other, forming a train, as we squeezed through the pack twice. There were people smoking and drunk everywhere. I felt like I was in a mosh pit, but it was exhilarating. Alyssa would have cried had she been there. I texted her and told her that, and when she asked why, I responded with a picture of the crowd, to which she responded “Oh HECK no!”

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Afterwards, we walked to the hotel. We sat in the lobby and eventually Ali went up to go talk with Mckenna, so Kelly and I stayed downstairs. We both fell asleep in the chairs, but woke up to children running through the lobby with whistles. We decided to go find ice-cream, and then came back and sat around the lobby for a while waiting on everyone else. No one was answering their phones, so we assumed they were asleep and headed out to go to a pub and then later went to find somewhere to eat. So, we didn’t go crazy on Saint Patrick’s Day, but we still had a nice time. Kelly fell asleep on my bed and I fell asleep on Ali’s temporary bed on my floor while we waited for Ali and Greg to come home. They got back pretty late, but as soon as Kelly got up from my bed, I passed out in my actual bed.

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The next day, I had planned to study for my final the next day, but instead went hiking in Howth with Ali and Greg. It was a beautiful day for a hike! We ended up going back to the cliff walk and then stopped by a fish stand before catching the train into Dublin. We made sure to stop by the donut stand in Dublin we love so much so that Greg could get some for the last time before boarding his Aircoach to get to the airport. We said goodbye to Greg, picked up ice-cream for Kelly who sadly couldn’t join us that day, and headed back home.

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I tried to study when I got back, but fell asleep around midnight, woke up around 2 and decided to set an alarm and try again for the morning. I ended up waking up around 4:30 to my watch alarm going off from when I set it in the train on the way to Krakow in case I had to sleep in the bathroom the whole night. Then I woke up at 6:30 to my actual alarm for the day, before falling back asleep until 8:30, at which point I finally got up. I loitered around all morning and then found my way to the Blackrock exam centre, which I had to take a bus to. But, at least it was another beautiful day! The exam was pretty terrible… 100 multiple choice questions with -0.5 for each wrong answer. But, life goes on.

I went to the grocery store before returning home mentally drained. I needed to get my room in order, finish a summer job application, and video chat Alyssa so she could get me the clothes I needed sent to Ireland with my parents. Ali and Kelly had to go into Dublin, and they brought me back donuts since they knew I was having a rough day. It was much appreciated. If you haven’t caught on, we like to appease each other with food. The next day, I got a ton of cleaning and organizing done and then went into Dublin for game-night at church.

So… still no good rest before my next wave of activities– hanging out with the Stuckwisch family (-Alyssa)

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