The journey wasn’t too bad. The flight to Tenerife was delayed half an hour, which was enough to make me nervous about the connection. But as it happened, the very moment we got to the baggage reclaim belt, our suitcases landed in front of us, so we checked in and got to the gate with 10 minutes to spare.

And then the flight was about 90 minutes late. Ah well, nothing like as bad as the 28 hour delay last year.

And when we got to the B&B, they hadn’t received my confirmation email, hadn’t booked me in, and were now full. but he phoned around and found us another B&B just a few doors away, so that was all right.

We all liked Dublin. It’s a human-sized city – you can walk around the centre, with no trouble at all. Well, except for the big city traffic that I’m not used to any more. The pedestrian lights seem to go green for about 10 seconds every 5 minutes, so the place is full of jaywalkers, and we wound up joining them. It’s full of nice little statues, and I’ll post photos when I can download some from my camera. It’s also rather wet, but as they say in Ireland, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait 5 minutes, and it’ll change.”

The buildings look a lot like the UK, which figures. After all, most of them were built when Dublin was part of the UK. And the sky is just like Britain – towering fluffy clouds with maybe a few patches of blue. But the money is Euros, and the distances are in kilometres.

I finally got to meet a long-standing email friend called Peadar O’Guilin. He lives near Dublin and was kind enough to give us a guided tour. Even better, he knows a lot about Irish history, and knows how to tell it. So now we know why there’s a woman buried beside Johnathon Swift in St Patrick’s cathedral, and why there’s a door in the cathedral with a hole cut in it, and how the halfpenny bridge got it’s name.

This morning we picked up a hire car and set off west. On Peadar’s reccomendation, we stopped off at a place whose name I can’t remember, never mind spell. But it used to be the cultural centre of Ireland a thousand years ago. There are several ruined churches, and two round towers, where the monks used to hide when trouble came calling. Trouble came a lot, what with Vikings, Normans, and what have you.

And now we’re in Galway, in a B&B with internet access. Watch this space.

Posted by sheila

Sheila came to La Palma with a six month contract and has stayed 24 years so far. She used to work as a software engineer at the observatory, but now she's a writer and Starlight guide.

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