BERKELEY, MEET IRELAND

Jesse Dutton-Kenny. 20 year old U.C. Berkeley student spending the spring semester of 2012 in Dublin, Ireland studying at University College, Dublin. I am a Native American Studies/Ethnic Studies major with a minor in Celtic Studies, hence the Ireland. I am also a potter, a writer, a former barista, and a traveler, hence the study abroad. I will be using this blog to post about stuff I learn, stuff I see and places I go in the hopes that it will encourage further study abroad experiences.

Only 8 Days Left in Ireland…

  • Flying out on May 13th for Budapest
  • Headed to Scotland May 16th
  • Wales May 18th
  • Stonehenge May 20th
  • Flying Dublin to Boston May 21st
  • Staying with family on the East Coast until the 24th
  • Then visiting Washington D.C. with my dad until the May 29th
  • Then flying home Baltimore to California on May 29th!
  • 24 days left.

Queen of Tarts and various other foods around Dublin

The Flowers of Dublin, Springtime 2012

Irish Music and Dancing Show at the Arlington Hotel, Temple Bar - Sunday, April 29th

Croke Park Day to see Gaelic Football - Sunday, April 29th

Dublinia, Dublin’s Viking World Museum - Saturday, April 28th

Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin - Saturday, April 28th

St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin - Tuesday, April 24th

Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin - Wednesday, April 25th (Part 2)

Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin - Wednesday, April 25th (Part 1)

READING WEEK @ UCD

Monday (Apr. 23rd)

  • Today I again, did nothing. I mostly just relaxed from being done with classes. Such a good feeling. I also organized my notes into piles so I could begin to think about starting to maybe prepare for exams.
  • I also planned out a list of things I still really wanted to do in Dublin and the rest of Ireland and thus begins my last 3 weeks in Ireland… full of exams and hyper tourism.

Tuesday (Apr. 24th)

  • Vanessa, Alex and I headed to the Powerscourt Townhouse for breakfast. I love this part of Dublin. It is incredibly charming. I had granola with yogurt and rhubarb and rhubarb and orange lemonade. Delicious. 
  • Then we headed to St. Patrick’s Cathedral. I can’t believe it took me so long to go here. It is truly beautiful. We were lucky enough to go at the time when the choir boys were rehearsing for the Evensong… Wow! I haven’t ever heard church music like that before. It was beautiful. The Cathedral itself is really nice as well. VEry old, very historical, got to see Jonathan Swift’s grade.
  • Then we headed across town to the Merrion Square area and went to the National Museum of Ireland, Natural History. I LOVED IT. They nicknamed it the Dead Zoo, but it just reminded me so much of where I work in Berkeley, at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology. I sit at a little desk surrounded by elephant skeletons and stuffed mammals. The museum was incredible though!
  • Afterwards we went to Merrion Square Park to say hello to Oscar Wilde’s statue and wander through the picturesque fairy tale gardens. Great afternoon.
  • Then we wandered BACK across town to The Cineworld and bought tickets to see Avengers (yeah, it came out first in Dublin for some reason) and finally headed home for some rest

Wednesday (Apr. 25th)

  • Today was a day of incredible rain. It just rains all the time in Ireland, this is a very true stereotype. Nobody wanted to leave the house all day, it was so difficult just to get out of bed. 
  • Buuuut… of course this was the day we had planned on going to Kilmainham Gaol, and we just had to go. So Jason, Jill, and I trekked all the way out to Kilmainham (takes 2 buses) and paid 2 euro to see the most famous jail in Irish political history. 
  • It’s really quite a fascinating place and I don’t have the time, space, or energy to write it all down here… but basically almost every major Irish political figure until the 1940s was held here including all Parnell, Emmett, the 1916 Risers and Eamon de Valera. 
  • The Gaol is really famous because 14 of the men who rose up in 1916 were brutally executed here which then essentially sparks the war for independence. 
  • If you’re in Dublin and have time, this is a must see. It’s 2 euros for students!
  • It was quite an adventure getting home in the horrible rain, but we eventually made it and I huddled up in bed for the rest of the day.

Thursday (Apr. 26th)

  • Avengers Day! Our first stop in the morning was the Olde Sweet Shope on Dame Street, this place is magical! They have tons of American candy, which I personally miss. 
  • Then we headed to Boojum by Henry Street for nachos and burritos for lunch and finally we headed to Cineworld on Parnell Street to see Avengers. AWESOME MOVIE. 
  • After that we all headed back to UCD’s campus because there was an exchange students farewell dinner in the Global Lounge. It was just free wine and appetizer food but it was nice. 
  • Then we stopped by the student bar really quick to say “farewell” to more people and then headed to Vanessa’s apartment to watch movies and play games and drink more wine. Oh to not have classes anymore! 
  • Really should be studying more though… but I have time.

Friday (Apr. 27th)

  • Today I worked on my last Art History paper all day and finally turned it in. Now I’m officially done with that class and Welsh, then it’s just 3 final exams and another big paper.  
  • After the paper got turned in I went out to Thai Food dinner with Alex and Erin and Laurence before we went to see a play at the Abbey Theatre. I missed Pad Thai so much. Dublin is not all about the Thai food in the way Berkeley is, so sad. 
  • Anyways, we went to see the musical “Alice in Funderland” at Ireland’s National Theatre, the Abbey. It’s a modern retelling about a girl from Cork who “goes down the rabbit hole” and winds up in crazy ass Dublin Town. It’s great, hilarious, super super Irish, and full of wacky songs. 
  • After the play we went a few blocks to Messr’s Maguires, a local Dublin brewpub for a few pints and good banter with friends. I personally really liked “The Rusty” which is a locally brewed Irish Red Ale. Try it!

Saturday (Apr. 28th)

  • I slept in a bit today and then did a bit of studying in the morning before I got a little bored with that and decided to go do some touristic stuff. 
  • So i took the bus down to the city centre and started at the Chester Beatty Library. It’s an amazing collection about “the art of the book” and religious art and manuscripts from many different world religions. DEFINITELY worth a visit if you have time in Dublin. Plus it’s right in the Dublin Castle gardens.
  • After the Library I went to Christ Church Cathedral at the end of Dame Street and got a tour of the church for a few euro. It’s a very old church with a ton of history. Also worth a trip, but it’s kinda similar to St. Pats so you could go to either. 
  • Christ Church is connected to Dublinia, Dublin’s Viking World, so I bought a combined ticket and met up with Vanessa and Cap for Dublinia. It was a cool place but it’s clearly designed for a younger age group. At Dublinia we were able to go up in a tower and get a nice view of Dublin too. That’s worth it!
  • After Dublinia we all went to Queen of Tarts for the amazing tea and cakes. An absolute, all time favorite. 
  • Then I stopped by Butler’s Chocolates to by some Irish Coffee and Bailey’s Cream flavored truffles for souvenirs for my family and friends. 
  • Last stop of the day was at St. Stephen’s Green, for a little stroll, before heading home to work on my scholarship essays for a job back home. 

Sunday (Apr. 29th)

  • Croke Park Day! Some friends and I headed down to Ireland’s National GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association) stadium to see Gaelic Football, one of Ireland’s National sports. 
  • We saw the end of the Kildare v. Tyrone match and the first half of the Cork v. Mayo match. Cork and Kildare won the day but we were too freezing from sitting in the rain to stay past that. We did get hot dogs and cotton candy though! Lovely day at the games. 
  • We also paid a visit to the GAA Museum where we got to see the history of Gaelic Football, Hurling, Camogie, Woman’s Gaelic Football, and Handball. Plus we got to play some interactive games and kick around a football, use a hurley and test our reflexive skills. 
  • After the matches we went to the Arlington Hotel to see Irish music and dancing. Plus we had a bunch of fun irish drinks like irish coffee, jameson and ginger, and irish black russians. 
  • The show and music were really fun, but definitely super touristy. It’s 30 euro for a 3 course music and the show, but if you don’t want dinner it’s free!

Various Touristic Wanderings Around Dublin Town - Monday, April 23rd

Powerscourt, Merrion Square Park, General Post Office, Abbey Theatre…

Alice in Funderland at the Abbey Theatre!

Various Touristic Wanderings Around Dublin Town - Saturday, April 21st