after four days in london, two days in edinburgh, one day in st. andrews, two days in belfast, it was time to move onto our final stop of our whirlwind united kingdom tour… dublin. we got off our two-hour train from belfast and took a taxi to our hostel right in the city. we checked in, grabbed our apartment keys [we were so excited about having our own kitchen to cook!] and headed a few blocks down to the instructed door.
after a treacherous fifteen minutes dragging fifty-pound suitcases up four flights of stairs, we arrived breathless at apartment 375. silently, we enter the room. our tired eyes take in our surroundings. sparse. bare. but not the oh-so-cool-modern-minimalistic sparse. not even the hospital sparse. at least hospitals are sterile. this place was the antonym of sterile. dark stains had found their home every three steps on the beige carpet and made it clear they no plans to leave. paint was chipping. bathroom tiles were cracking.
somehow i didn’t remember that the apartment slept five when i reserved it… but it did. a bunk bed sat in the middle of the living room & a fold-up cot was stuffed into the corner, as well as a bedroom with a queen bed. endless varieties of places to sleep. we threw down our bags and gingerly sat on the couch. it felt damp. i moved to the armchair. it felt damp. we laughed at this place, this bacteria-breeding ground we’d be spending three nights in and then we flopped into the bottom bunk bed together. it looked like the cleanest spot. the sheets were white. that was a good sign. we lay side by side and listened to adele on my iphone. song after song after song. the kind of listening where you don’t say a word, you only close your eyes and really, really listen to the lyrics. i love listening to music like that with someone.
we discovered the raddest mexican food place in belfast called boojam [basically the irish version of chipotle] and to our delight, one was in dublin. even though we had lunch there earlier, we walked to boojam for dinner a second time. why mess with a good thing? of course, i took a few wrong turns on our walk to dinner and of course, dublin skies decided to pour. pour pour pour. we were lost and walking in a downpour and all we could do was laugh. that’s what this trip taught me: laughing can solve a lot of things. it also taught me that sometimes you have to wait for things [trains, buses, planes, directions] in life and sometimes you aren’t in control of how long that wait is. so maybe you should laugh about it.
we ate our mexican and walked back in the now-sprinkling rain to our grimy home. there was no wi-fi, no cable [maybe there was– we never figured out how to turn the TV on] and we had hours before we would head to bed. so we sat in a dark room, the rain outside back to a brutal, brutal pour [and thunder and wind!] and took turns playing songs on my itunes. this one, now this one, oh, oh! you have to listen to the lyrics of this one. this was my grade ten year right here.
i feel so relaxed on nights like that. it brought me back to the last time i was wi-fi and cable-less, our hood canal summer vacation. all we had was music. i love life that way. the next day was more of the same: up for church [we found one two blocks from our hostel!] and back to the apartment for lunch. kristen cooked up an amazing meal [who would NOT want to marry this girl? i obviously have some domestic skills to learn. good thing the Bible tells me not to compare or i’d be depressed at my short-comings. hahaha.] — and we ate at the kitchen table together, listening to three sermons in a row. a real sabbath day. a real rest. it was beautiful.
sunday night! oh sunday night! we were off to the academy to see noah & the whale playing. kristen had never heard any of their songs before we went, and i had probably heard three of them. so it was really new for both of us, which i love. i LOVE shows. noah & the whale put on a ridiculous one. they have a really fun energy and you could tell they love sharing their music. check out this video clip from the show:
so. awesome. i have one final ireland post to write — and then this trip will only live on in my memories. :)