Sorry I have been absent and neglecting my posting duties. Many of you would have just noted this as my usual forgetful self. Others may have figured that I was having so much fun gallivanting around Dublin that I couldn't keep track of the time nor remember where my room was. While I can promise you that I never forgot about my record keeping blog, I can say that the latter statement is only partially true.
Because the events are so long that have lead me up to my fourth day in Ireland, I will break them down into three parts. The first of which shall be my plane trip.
Now, many of you know that I am not the biggest fan of planes. Mostly because I have no idea who the guy up front is flying the thing and whether or not he really deserves to be. Kudos to American Airlines for giving me a very night flight. Both of which went off without too much of an issue. That is, of course, neglecting customs.
You see, some of my friends had the wonderful idea of getting me a stuffed animal from Build-A-Bear. This heartfelt and loving gift would have been otherwise benign if it weren't for the fact that they purposefully gave it to me after my luggage was filled to the brim. Speaking of which, thank you to the wonderful lady in American Airlines who did not charge me for my luggage being three pounds over the weight limit.
Ok, so here I am a confused and lost little soul walking around the huge airport that is Chicago International. Now, when I say huge I mean huge. I was impressed by the size of this place, and the amount of shops inside of it were just staggering. But, alas, I digress. The main point is that this is an international flight, I was going straight into another country. And for that reasons my plane was fortunate enough to have customs standing in the walkway picking out random people. So of course, a very nice woman looks down at my carry-on and stops me.
To describe my carry-on is simple. In one hand I am holding a laptop bag. In the other, a bag containing a teddy bear! Needless to say the woman looks at me slightly confused because even though for the last hour I have been trying to train my Build-A-Bear to be a covert op, hiding behind enemy lines within a bag, he thinks he is a commando and keeps poking his head over the top. So the lady asks me "Sir, what do you have in your bag?" I don't know lady - a bomb?! I've bought this sweet little innocent teddy bear and carried with throughout the whole airport so that I could kill everyone going to Ireland. Yes, that's right, nothing says "Die Irish" like an American teddy bear. Probably one of the most awkward moments of my life.
But then we land, apparently the Irish think it is fine to just walk down a flight of stairs off an airplane, and all goes well. I felt a bit slighted though - when the lady in the airport immediately said to me - "Non-EU over there." Now, I am not exactly patriotic and I am pretty sure I wasn't running around with an American flag draped over my shoulders, but to just pick me out of the crowd that easily? I know Americans walk/talk/and act like a bunch of bumbling loud-mouthed morons, but at least seem like you were slightly confused by my presence.
Now, here comes the interesting part. I have never used a bus system before in my life. If I used a bus, it clearly went from point A to point B - usually paid for that single purpose in life. So when I whimsically hop onto a bus into downtown Dublin I had no idea what I was getting into. For instance, I heard the phrase "Who told you this bus went to there" more often than I would like to admit. And it cost be a good bit of change and some friendly people to finally find my way to UCD's doorstep. Of course, the doorstep is about half a mile from where my room is - travelling much lighter next time. But upon finding my room and throwing everything in haphazardly I felt like I was done with my day.
That is, until I took a good look at my restroom. See, I am not certain of what the Irish believe is "comfortable", but Americans hold their bathrooms as a sacred entity. And while I do have my own private toilet, sink, and shower, I do not enjoy that they are not more than six inches away from each other and in a five by five room. I could conceivably urinate while looking in the mirror to shave as I washed off in the shower. Very economical, not very comfortable.
But for the first day, it was pretty good. Oh, and it rained.