It’s St. Patrick’s Day and the bars are already packed (at least, I assume so). The sun is shining and the spring temperatures have returned, which is a dangerous mix for a holiday that most celebrate as a reason to get drunk. When I lived in Boulder, everyone wanted to watch the world’s shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade–so short that they did it twice.

I don’t have plans this year. I’ll probably cook corned beef and go out to a bar later. I was tempted to purchase some Irish beer yesterday, but realized that I don’t care enough–besides, the American microbrews taste better than the limited variety of the Emerald Isle.

When I studied in London for a semester, I was excited about my three-day journey to Dublin. I got recommendations from some Northern Irish friends, which a few locals told me to skip after reviewing my list. Of course, I kept the Book of Kells and Guinness Brewery on my must-see list for the long weekend.

I quickly realized that Irish either have the worst sense of direction or enjoy practical jokes (or both). I deliberately chose my accommodation because it was across from Parnell Square on O’Connell Street. I figured it was an easy location in case I got lost. Unfortunately, most people I asked couldn’t direct me to the widest street in the city.

After getting so lost on my first day that I somehow ended up at the pub at which I first asked for directions back to Parnell Square, I decided on another method of finding my way around Dublin. For the rest of my time, I asked for directions to the River Liffey. I knew that if I found the river, I could find the bridge and O’Connell St.

Despite the lack of useful directions from locals, I enjoyed my weekend in Dublin. It was sunny and cool–probably just a little cooler than today–and the people were a lot of fun to talk with. And no matter how lost I got, I always found where I wanted to go–even if I arrived much later than intended.

Unfortunately, all my photos of Dublin are on film and I haven’t had the opportunity to scan all those old pictures. Once I have those scanned, I’ll have many more travel tales to tell.

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