Travel in Ireland by train from the north must go through Dublin. And since I was headed on to the west from the north, that’s what I did. I grabbed the first train from Dublin to Belfast. Normally, this wouldn’t be too busy, but today there was a match at Croke Park (in Dublin) that everyone was heading to, so the train was packed and everyone was wearing their red shirts to cheer on their team. It was noisy and crowded and lots of fun! The kids beside me were heading to Dublin for the first time and were so excited to be able to go that even the choruses of “Where are we now” didn’t bother me, like they usually would have. Maybe it’s the accent? Or all the excitement? Or because I am on holidays? Or that I was really tired from the night before and didn’t really process what was going on? Who knows… it was fun. And I was headed back home to Dublin, if only for a couple hours.
From Connolly Station, I took the tram to Heuston Station easily and watched North Dublin go by on the way. At the station, I had a 2 hour layover before my next train, so I finally had my first pint of Guinness in the Republic. It was just as great as I remembered and anticipated and I knew I was home! Ahhhh, Dublin, I missed ya!
I grabbed the train to Galway, relaxed and watched the scenery go by. For a bit. Then, it all began to look fairly similar, so I turned on the ipod (and tuned out the annoying company across from me), and journalled for a bit.
A few hours later, we were in Galway. I made my way to the hostel. I don’t know if it’s my luck, or if things are better, but the hostels have been far nicer than I remembered and anticipated. This one, SleepZone, was just off a main street, was a female 8 bed-room, with a decent amount of space, and even had a balcony. It had good reviews, had a personal recommendation from a friend, and was available fo ra reasonable rate. Three things I live when I travel!
From the balcony in my room:
Ok – so not quite the view we all think of, but it was nice to be able to take a couple chairs out and sit outside with people. And to have the door open a bit while we slept – it gets muggy with 8 people in a room.
After dropping my stuff off, I headed out to check out the town, grab a quick bite to eat and find some music – one of the reasons I had come to the west of Ireland. I found a decent session at a local bar, and hung out for a couple hours just hanging out with people and listening to tunes, before making my way back. Another great day.