I spend a lot of time on my own. I’m not saying that to get pity, or as a statement of “I don’t have friends,” because I do. I sure do. I have some of the best friends in the world. The only thing is, is that they’re scattered around the United States, or in even worse cases, across the globe. But I’m going to stay on topic, that’s a different story for a different time. When I registered for this trip, the last thought on my mind was how close I’d get with this group of strangers; but at the same time, I didn’t think about how valuable I’d find walking around in a foreign country by myself.
And that’s how I spent my final day in Dublin. I found a few more gifts for friends and family back home, grabbed some sushi for lunch, and then proceeded to wander around the city. It was a different experience than before when I took off on my own, because at this point, I recognize landmarks. I know how to get back to Camden Court without having to rely on a map. I walked through one of the parks in the middle of the city — Stephen’s Green — which amazed me how quiet and peaceful it was, especially for being surrounded by busy, working lives and the low-rise buildings that litter the city.
I swung through another one of my favorite places I found, Tower Records, just to soak in the beauty of the best record store I’ve ever set foot in. No purchases were made, but it felt so great to just browse. There’s not many places I can find true solace in, but record stores are one of those places.
After our class dinner, the majority of us went out for one last night in Dublin. We hit up Against the Grain first, kind of sentimental since that’s where we had our first meal while in Ireland, and moved over to the Bleeding Horse to finish up the night.
Luckily, we stumbled onto more live music. Rob Hughes and Mick Morris hadn’t played together much prior to this show, but you never would have guessed that. Our group put in countless requests, and they were able to fulfill pretty much all of them. Some highlights for me were the Bob Dylan covers (again!), Prince’s “Raspberry Beret” and Ray Charles’ “Georgia on my Mind.” So many songs that hold so much significance, and hearing them live that night was the cherry on top of an excellent two weeks abroad.
Ireland surprised me. I’ve been dreaming of going there since middle school, and after reading an article on Runner’s World, I had also been dying to test out the running. Although the running itself was lacking this trip, the running community has made up for it. That’s what I’m about to do for the rest of the flight — finishing up my final script and cutting the tape I’ll use.
There’s going to be a more mushy-gushy post, probably Saturday evening or Sunday morning, but that’s a synopsis of the last day. To those of you who have been playing along on this daily blogging journey abroad for the past two weeks, thank you. Spending precious Ireland-slash-group moments hyperlinking things, uploading photos, and scheduling the posts to go live in the central timezone-morning was all for y’all.
More to come. For now, stay with us.