We got an early start this morning! We’ve already done all of the touristy things that we wanted to, so we decided to just spend the day shopping and walking the city. First, we walked to the Temple Bar area for tea and then headed to the Dublin Gallery of Photography/Photographic Archive. There were some really great photographs, but my favorite part of the visit was reading a quote on the wall: “In reality, all we photographers photograph is ourselves in the other… All the time” – Evelyn Hofer. I wholeheartedly agree with her realization.
In the courtyard in front of the Gallery of Photography, there are these large structures that look a little like inverted umbrellas. When I first saw them, I appreciated them for their structure alone. My second thought was that they must be used for shade. And then I became confused because if/when it rains, water would get stuck in them. Then I had the realization that they must be rainwater collectors!! I’ve used this type of technology in design projects for studios before. It makes much more sense that they collect water rather than provide shade (even though it does do this), because it isalmost always raining and almost always cloudy. I get so excited when I see structures that are environmentally friendly, and even more so when they appear to be a sort of art piece!
We walked around for a while trying to find a place to eat. We walked for probably half an hour and we ending up choosing a restaurant that was only five minutes away, O’Brien’s. It was set up a little like Subway, but the food was much better. I got a delicious pesto chicken, sun-dried tomato, cucumber and spinach sandwich on a sesame seed bagel.
After lunch we walked up Grafton Street. Very similar in purpose to the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, Scotland, the street is filled with shops, restaurants, street vendors and street performers. We saw artists who made dogs out of sand, high school aged kids playing instruments together, and soloist guitar players and singers.
At the end of the street is St. Stephen’s Green, so we hung out there for a while. There is a little lake in the park that is very pretty, lots of swans and pigeons enjoy the water. Laura and I had an odd fascination with baby swans that were eating grass. They were all still very awkward in their bodies and they had trouble walking, it was adorable.
Afterwards, we went to a large indoor mall. The architecture was beautiful, all glass and iron. It reminded me of the Crystal Palace in Hyde Park, London, England that was built for the Great Exhibition of 1851.
Jackie had to leave us at the mall so that she could get to the airport for her flight back to Scotland. We got one last picture all together.
Then we headed to Bewley’s for some coffee and hot chocolate (for me). Bewley’s has been around since 1840 and sells their coffee all around the world.
At night, we went to Cobblestone, an Irish pub that Fluffy (our tour guide fromyesterday suggested). We had to walk really far to get there and down really sketchy streets. But once we got there, it was totally worth it. We were the only non-Irish people in the pub. The pub holds Traditional Irish Music Sessions everyday where locals come in with their instruments and freestyle together. It was very meaningful for me because I could picture my ancestors from Ireland doing the same exact thing.
Another quote I read today was on some street art of a Heinz Ketchup bottle, “Labelz are for jars, Not for people.” It’s a great quote to live by.