Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Dublin, Ireland—Day 200!

Today was much more of the same touristy stuff as yesterday except we got off to a much later start. After posting my CDs back to the United States (which proved to be quite the fiasco—not only do Irish post offices not take credit cards, but they also don’t sell boxes to ship things in!), Kim and I hit the tourist office and were disappointed that we had missed several really cool sounding tours for the day. So, over lunch, we decided to just spend the rest of the afternoon braving the rain and checking out Dublin Castle among other things in the city.

It turned out to be a great day and the rain eventually let up. We did a tour of the Dublin Castle (originally built in the 1200s on top of a Viking settlement) and visited the Natural History Museum. We then hit the Temple Bar area of town for dinner (Mexican food and margaritas!) and went back to the hotel where I found a message from Melanie waiting for me. Melanie is a girl whom I met in Guanajuato, Mexico (remember?) who lives in Dublin. She told me to call her when I got to Dublin, so I did but found out that she was away on a vacation. I wasn’t sure if she would be back or not so I wasn’t really expecting to hear back from her.

But we did and so Kim and I set back out on the town to meet up with Melanie and her friends. We had SUCH a good time with them—Melanie, two of her girl friends whose names I cannot remember, and two of her guy friends Barry (who works with the government and social security—basically gives money to help sick people) and John (who works for—who basically screens and then classifies pornography into different categories all day long. I’m not joking—he has to decide what good pornography is and what is really bad pornography, along with the different sub types of pornography that I just won’t go into right now).

Just when I thought I was a hearty beer drinker (ok, for all of you who don’t’ know, I really didn’t start drinking beer until Poland so I’m still really new at downing pints) I thought I could be suave and order myself a beer. But when John (one of Melanie’s friends) asked me what I wanted (which foiled my plan of going to the bar on my own and ordering), I blurted out “Stella” because that is the only beer that I really knew (besides Guinness) in Ireland. I had had it the night before only because the bar lady had listed it off as a beer on tap and I know a girl named Stella from where I used to work. I figured it wouldn’t be that bad, and it wasn’t. In fact, I thought it was pretty good. So I thought, yeah, I know my stuff, I’ll have a Stella.

Well, the look on John’s face told a different story. After I said “Stella” he just looked at me. And then screwed up his face. And then said, Stella? As if I was totally kidding.


After an awkward silence and me trying to find an excuse, Melanie said, you’re not drinkin’ Stella-that is like the wife beater of all Irish beers.

Great. Way to go Sarah.

Mortified, I blushed and John asked me again what I wanted and I was like uhhh, ummm, whatever you think and turned to sit back down, totally embarrassed by my drink request. How was I supposed to know? Just when I thought I could handle ordering my own beer, who was I kidding? I mean, I’m in freaking IRELAND where beer is drunk like water. They’re the beer aficionados here.

So John comes back with a Heineken for me (mental note—order Heineken next time) and we toasted and spent the rest of the night drinking away.

(c) 2004 Sarah Galbraith. All Rights Reserved.