In Dublin, I stayed at a quaint hotel with old fashioned room keys and a cozy feel of another era. Actors lead the literary pub crawl. It’s limited to 4 pubs – otherwise they start loosing participants who are too wasted to keep up.
IRELAND Getting off the plane in Dublin, looking for the right bus to catch, I met Pete–who told me never hesitate to ask an Irishman anything, because they’ll be dying to give you an answer even if they don’t have a clue. We chatted the whole 4 hour bus ride north to Ballybofey in Donegal where I had an incredible visit with my former classmate and bestie Cronan. I saw sights on the northwest coast of Ireland (the last stop before New York) that were so breathtaking it brought tears to my eyes. In the Atlantic coastal village of Glencolumbcille, at the Oideas Gael, a Gaelic language school, we ran into Martin McGinley a former journalist friend of Cronan’s who is also a well known fiddler, and he took out his fiddle and played just for me. And miracle of miracles, in this picturesque village in the middle of nowhere, a fiddlers festival was taking place! At Roartys Bar, the crazy-good fiddling jam sessions were moderated by a character right out of the movie ‘Waking Ned Devine.’ The next day, a girl from Detroit (me), introduced Cronan and Pete, two Donegal locals, and we spent hours out at Pete’s house in Fintown which overlooked stunning mountains and valleys. My stomach ached from laughing as two hilarious Irishmen told stories, talked about building things and dispensed wisdom–as only Irishmen could. Donegal’s mountains, lakes and Gaelic country were jaw-dropping beautiful.