When we arrived back in Dublin to drop off the car we knew we needed to fill the gas tank before turning it in. We plugged “petrol station” into Fiona and she directed us to this very random station. We struck up a conversation with the owners who told us we had to do three things:
1. We needed to go to the football finals on Sunday,
2. We had to wear blue (“What are our other options?” I asked. “There are no other options,” he replied.), and…
3. Under no circumstance were we to step foot inside Temple Bar.
Here is was Sunday and true to our word we had tickets to the GAA Finals and we were wearing blue. We had NO idea where we were going or what we were going to see but gosh darn it we were going.
The taxi driver asked where at the park we were going and I told him the section. It wasn’t until after he dropped us off that we discovered we were at the wrong location. We needed to pick up our tickets at the ticket booth. Finding the ticket booth was no easy task. We ended up walking the perimeter of the park, on the hottest of the day of the year, before finally finding the ticket booth which is located across the street from the park. (Everyone kept telling us it was across from Gills Pub, like we should know exactly where Gills Pub was located. Feckin eejits!)Then we had to walk back to where we were originally dropped off to get into the stadium.
Turns out GAA is Gaelic football and Dublin was one of the teams in the finals. Their color is blue so that’s why blue was the only option. (#UpTheDubs) As near as I can tell, GAA is something like soccer, football, rugby, basketball and volleyball all rolled into one. There was a lot of cheering and a lot of swearing and even a streaker. Sadly, we missed the streaker. If you get a chance to see a sporting event in Ireland you must go.
My only regret is that I didn’t get to sing Ireland’s Call because that’s kind of a secret dream of mine. Truth be told, that was the only reason I wanted to go to the game. I probably should have done some research because it turns out that Ireland’s Call was commissioned by the Irish Rugby Football Union for use at International Rugby Union events. I wonder if they’re playing rugby in California anytime soon???
Our final meal in Dublin was at Doheny & Nesbitt, a pub that was recommended by the bellman at the hotel. It is one of the oldest family-owned pubs in Dublin. It was just a short walk from the hotel and I had one of the best burgers I’ve ever eaten. I was halfway through it before I realized there was a big slice of ham on it!
On the way back we took the scenic route so I could photograph the doors.
We came across a little bakery and picked up some donuts for our midnight snack. When we got back to the hotel we ordered half a bottle of wine but when it arrived it was a full bottle. Turns out the one we ordered was out so they gave us a full bottle of a different brand. Score!
With the alarm set, we settled in for our final night in Ireland. Sleep was spotty during the night because the ceiling started leaking so we heard dripping all night long. And for some strange reason I kept having the urge to pee…
Dublin Pub Crawl stats:
Miles: 6.9 (Half of that was walking around the stadium)