I’ve been exploring all over the city lately and taking pictures like mad! Otherwise, my first ever homemade cream-of-mushroom soup turned out well tonight… although I think I may have made it backwards. First I made the soup yummy, and then I tried to thicken it. The flour, of course, only clumped. So I left it at runny-but-good. Next time I will try to make a white sauce and then add stuff to it from there. I really need to figure out how to make soup.

My friend has returned back from Inishmore and tells me it is well worth the visit. It is has been added to my list, which begins as follows:

September: Glendalough, Royal Botanic Gardens at Glasnevin, Phoenix park, Dillon Gardens
October: Longer trip with Kathy, visit Cavan, go to Cork over the Bank Holiday weekend
November: Galway or Limerick? Long trip to Paris
December: Dublin during Christmas, Belfast city trip

Currently compiling a more detailed list. I do love my lists. I have an inspiring Gardens of Ireland book to plan with!

I spent yesterday busily completing tasks in the City Centre. My sister will be happy: I mailed letters and acquired a number of stamps for her, including the gorgeous Paul Henry landscapes. I also visited the National Museum of Archeology on Kildare Street, which is much smaller than the one at Colin’s Barracks but is absolutely fascinating. The material was particularly interesting for me after all the reading I was doing last fall for my Newgrange/Mellifont abbey research paper. And I saw the very same roman coins which were found at Newgrange! A surprisingly amount of decoration on early irish/viking metalwork is actually knitted i-cord wire. It is incredibly fine, can you imagine how they possibly made it? The bog clothing trews (ie trousers) were a very interesting construction, which I will have to get back to!

This week I had to go down to register with the Gardai at the police station: paid my 150 euro and am now allowed to be studying here until May 31st 2009! This marks the point where most of the annoying busywork is done with, and I can get going on the enjoying being here. My picture on the registration card is a slightly funny one but it looks how I feel: I almost can’t believe I’m actually living here!! For so long it’s been my dream to live in Ireland and play music…

I headed off this morning knowing that the rain would fall before long. It’s been one of those days where no picture can capture how lovely the looming grey sky is. The 10 bus goes directly from campus over to Phoenix Park. It only took an hour! The instant we got off, the rain started. Wandered around, found a mysterious modern star fort? And from the crest of the hill, I spotted a tempting domed temple! On the wander down to it, I saw a Lutyens bench and started to wonder… Sure enough, it was the Lutyen’s war memorial on Islandbridge. On my list, and we just happened upon it. And in a beautifully sombre drizzle too.

My housemate has returned to college after her weekend home and we’ve just been catching up. I’ve also had a lovely long practice session today. The housemates are a very receptive audience, which helps! I have always been a bit shy about practicing around other people, but at least in Ireland I don’t have to explain what the uilleann pipes are!

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  1. Ah ha! found you online!My list:~~Dublin city centre (Trinity college, Chester Beatty LIbrary, etc)~~Afternoon trip to Howth or Dalkey via DART (maybe someting to do one day after class?)~~Newgrange and around (thinking of just taking a mary gibbons tour)~~potentially glendalough– I’d like to at least explore the valley since I won’t have the gear to take on the wicklow way)~~potentially galway, depending on how things work out~~~longer trip on the weekend of oct 3rd??Here’s the thing; I figured out that its ultimately cheaper and faster to just fly to Paris and the cheapest flight I could find was for L30 coming out of Belfast on oct 5th. So did you want to take a trip out to Belfast with me? the biggest interest for me is the Giants Causeway and the towns of Bushmills, Dunseverick and Portbradden, all of which are a couple hours outside of Belfast. Look it up and see if your interested–otherwise I’m up for a trip out to galway and inishmore!Kathy K