My housemate has returned to Dublin from Cork with all my clean socks. Her Granny does her laundry, and this weekend she did some of mine too. Imagine having that kind of help… I’ve had to do my own washing for a decade!
The sun came out this weekend, warming up a lot more than my back. Socialising (I am practicing my proper spellings as they are quite particular about using the correct ones here) has been quite fun! I’ve met a number of very interesting people: quakers, musicians, fellow students. It is a huge change from what I expected only a week ago… I seem to be training myself to adjust to moving. You’d think it would make me more callous about home but it actually makes me want to care more about where I am.
Speaking of which, I have been trying to register as an absentee voter over here but it is difficult. The online system isn’t working properly and the election approaches! The more Irish people question me and the more I hear about Palin, the more concerned I am.
Friday night was Dublin’s ‘culture night’ with free admission to all the tourist sites. I went to St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Christchurch Cathedral as well. Definitely prefer St. Patrick’s. The choir was practicing, and they have a beautiful evensong service. Apparently, Handel’s messiah was first performed there!
Saturday: I joined two friends on an excursion to the seaside suburb of Malahide. It was a short hop on the bus, but we could’ve taken the railway instead. We had a bit of a promenade and checked out the ultra modern “castle”. It was absolutely Flonging? with day trippers, Irish and otherwise. Interesting to see the railway suburb, and lovely to be on the beach on such a sunny day. Leafy demense and cricket. Later on I met up with a musician friend and we listened to a great Old Time session at the Cobblestones. Later on, there were tunes. I suppose this was the first real session I’ve sat in on here and it was Lovely! I discovered that I had a tune name wrong, which is to be not unexpected but the story behind the real name is great. It was an ideal day, and I went home exhausted. Herds of women stumbling around the place sheeplishly were standing about outside the clubs, rendered useless by their shards of clothing and ice pick heels. Well-dressed males came and went. I guess Dublin has a “good” night-life.
Sunday: A rest day of the highest order. Slept in and then made myself an “irish” breakfast. I vegetarian-ized it by replacing the sausages and blood pudding with cheese, which really is better than both anyway.
I have almost finished with the first couple books for my courses. A word on that. There’s no required reading here, no printouts or readers or any of that. No textbooks at all. Readings are all voluntary, chosen randomly off the reading list if the students are lucky enough to get one. I’m not sure I like it. In fact I’m pretty sure I don’t. I appreciate the flexibility, and the range of interesting sources, but I like finishing books and I hate the library system here. They are conspiring against me. It is impossible to get any of the readings I want! I have a short paper to write on Real vs. Fake Art for my “Hitchhiker’s Guide to Philosophy” class. I shall have to change the spellcheck settings on my computer!
Then I went for a ramble in the setting sun around the suburbs south of the university, ending up at Deer Park. The suburbs are either expensive or just plain nicer than ours at home. Will have to do more research. There were lots of children and loving old couples to observe. Baked a chocolate cake tonite. Think the vinegar was the wrong kind for my favourite recipe, but it tastes fine anyway. My housemate is eating it and it should be gone soon.
I am thinking a lot about consumption and human nature. Perhaps I will have a conclusion about that sometime. In the meantime, I have stopped flushing the toilet so much and decided I do not need a fourth pair of shoes unless I see a good deal on hiking boots…