Great Ireland Adventure – Day 9 (New friends & old pubs)

We set the alarm so we’d be up in time to enjoy breakfast in the hotel. The restaurant was very charming. The food was delicious but the best part of the meal was the coffee. Those Irish know how to make a good cup of Joe. Every cup of coffee I’ve had this entire trip was brewed using a French Press. I’m not going to lie, I did a little online shopping and there just might be a French Press on my front porch when I get home. (Thanks, Amazon!)

20160716_053728We grabbed coffee and a scone at Fallon & Byrne because we loved the place so much at dinner last night. We managed to get in a lot of walking (and shopping) before heading out to meet up with our friends. Sonja has been Facebook friends with two of them for several years. She became acquainted with them through music. We had no idea what we were in for but we were pretty sure it was going to be a night to remember…it didn’t disappoint.

 

13692685_10153194182613078_6896731784109323391_nMaurice and Camilla met us outside a very posh store and we meet up with two more friends, Enda and Anne Marie (somehow she got cut out of the photo), before hitting the first of several pubs. Anne Marie is from Michigan but she’s celebrating 20 years in Ireland this year. They’re all very talented in their own way and although we just met them in person tonight, it feels like we’ve been friends for years.

20160716_072735The weather was so lovely that we had a hard time finding a place outside so we ended up downstairs at Bruxelles. Bruxelles is located just off Grafton Street and is actually 3 bars in 1. It was perfect because it was quiet and air conditioned. We spent some time chatting and getting to know each other.

FB_IMG_1468841435166Camilla is originally from Sweden and she’s a gifted artist. One of her (many) talents is knitting and Sonja ordered two custom-made stuffed kitties from her that she was going to hand-deliver when we met up. Sonja suggested I check out Camilla’s website, MillaMull Art & Design, and I fell in love with her designs. In fact, I ordered a unicorn, 2 kitties, and a frog. (The picture doesn’t do them justice!) You should have heard us squeal when she gave them! They are the cutest things you’ve ever seen and we could not contain excitement. My great-great grandparents were from Sweden and it was so special for me to have something handmade from this beautiful, talented Swedish artist. I can’t wait to send one of the kitties to my Nana.

20160716_091316The second pub, O’Donoghues, is one of Dublin’s oldest pubs and is known for having live, traditional Irish music  every night. There we met up with another couple, Enda and Karin. Walking into O’Donoghues is like walking into the Tardis—bigger on the inside. The facade is very small and it looks like a little hole in the wall, but when you step inside you realize it keeps going and going. I think there were 4 or 5 different sections to the place. We drank a glass, we learned the hard way to not order a pint, and enjoyed some live music before heading over to Foley’s for dinner. I think Smithwick’s might just turn this wine-loving gal into a beer drinker.

20160716_101640At Foley’s, we were joined by yet another couple, Maurice’s son and his girlfriend, who only added to the fun and festivities. A glass/pint and pub food (mostly fish & chips) were enjoyed by all before it was time to say goodbye to Enda and Anne Marie and Enda and Karin.

 

 

20160716_130009Now, off to The Palace Bar. The Palace Bar was another traditional Irish pub with its own local flair and several tiny, separate rooms. It was established in 1823 and the decor is the same today as it was back then.  After yet another glass/pint, it was finally time to call it a night. Hugs for everyone before a lovely stroll back to the hotel.

Tomorrow is our last full day in Ireland and we’re heading to a football game. This should be good! #UpTheDubs

Dublin Pub Crawl stats:
Steps: 12,252
Miles: 5.34

*Photo credit for the first group shot and the MillaMull Art & Design animals goes to Camilla.

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