Saturday, May 7, 2011

Show me a day old sandwich, and I'll show you my delicious dinner for tonight.

              I’ve changed since I have come to Ireland, like I now put milk in my cereal. Sometimes. Here are a few mind boggling facts I learned here:

1)      You know how grilled cheese is awesome, but only for five minutes after it has been made? Take heart soldiers, it can be salvaged by taking it for a spin in the microwave then burning all of its impurities out in the toaster.
2)      Saint Patrick was a beast. He was captured by the Irish and made a slave, but eventually escaped. And then the feisty man came back! Maybe it was because if they tried to take him again, he could say, “I’m going because I want to, not because you told me to." This is basically how it went down:
Why the heck would you go back, Patrico?
I want them to love me and eventually throw me a parade. Jesting, jesting. For Jesus!
And then he went back, and everyone loved him because he was super loving and wasn’t afraid of the pagan gods.
Patty, how come the Dagda doesn’t make you shake in your bed each night?
Because I’m not afraid of nonexistent gods.  
Pat looks very dapper after 1500 years

3)      Grape fluid is unpalatable. We attended a service at Christ Church, and they served us the hard stuff. Holy mackerel, Jesus is tasting a little bitter today. I don’t mind the communion wine at Hillside as much. It’s kind of strong, but it’s only a baby shot, so I can deal with it. Then I found out it was grape juice. I still say it’s too strong.
4)      I can wash my face in five seconds flat. Not because I enjoy power washing, but because Ireland has implemented the two-faucet deal. You can choose from extreme hotness or extreme coldness, which usually leads to extreme pain.
5)      Ireland has these nifty metal boxes on most main streets that shoot out free money! Maybe that’s why they’re in a recession.
6)      The difference between a latte and a cappuccino is the amount of milk foam. Don’t pay more for air.
Happy to be ripping off customers
       7)      I can’t do an Irish accent because the Irish don’t sound very Irish. If I tried, I’d just end up sounding South African, and we all know how embarrassing that is.
8)      The sign “To Let” is never a typo for “Toilet”. Ireland has very few public toilets, but my bladder has been strengthened because of this.
I hate you.
Everyone knows that Ireland is green, has sheep, and it rains there more often than a king (except when we were here, thank goodness). But, there’s more to it than that. I like the small tidbits of Ireland because it makes the bigger picture make more sense. So, if you ask me “How was Ireland?” or “What did you learn there?”, expect a step-by-step instruction on how to salvage a sandwich. I like to focus on the important things.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Gravy-smothered squid with a side of mushrooms and beets? I'll take it!

                If the west is where it was won, why didn’t I see any trophies?
                We ventured to the opposite side of Ireland at the end of April for our last trip. We stopped at a major tourist attraction: the Blarney Stone. The Irish say there’s a difference between blarney and BS. For example:
                BS: Telling a 50-year-old woman that she doesn’t look a day over 20.
                Blarney: Asking the age of an older woman so you know at what age girls become beautiful.
  One Taylor boy at the end of the queue may or may not have French kissed the stone. I hope he enjoyed my leftovers. 
Get a room
We took a boat to get to our hike in Dunloe. I thought it was going to be a ten minute ride. It was actually 100 minutes. I was not amused.
Natalie and I decided to run the hike, which was supposed to last about 3 hours.
                Lexi: You’re going to run seven miles?
                Audrey: Well you’re going to walk it.
Hell mountain awaited us. I know, because it made my quads burn.
We planned to run the whole thing. Then we realized we were running up a mountain. Ok, we can just run two miles at a time…1 mile…Five minute intervals, and no less! It didn’t help that we had just eaten lunch. The peak of the incline was a glorious moment indeed. We no longer stopped because of shortness of breath, but instead because we spotted sweet action bridges that looked like they belonged in China (because they were made out of chopsticks. Weird.) and adorable baby infant lambies.
People should really stop saying, "You're so cute, I could just eat you up!"
Because then they do.
                We visited Muckross House, a 65-room mansion built in the 1800s for Mr. and Mrs. Herbert . I suppose I don’t understand the purpose of ornateness.
                Henry: Mary, my dear, why did you purchase a 100 kilogram, 4 meter high, gold-plated mirror with squirrel detail that cost 2000 euro?
                Mary: So I can do my hair in the morning.
In addition, they had a bell system, which linked every room to the main hallway. For instance, if you’re in the boudoir, you can ring the bell, and then a corresponding bell in the main hallway labeled “boudoir” rings, prompting a servant to come to your stead. This is the equivalent of texting your mother from your room to bring you a sandwich.
    We visited the Cliffs of Moher, but you can’t look over the edge, so nix that location on your “Must see in Ireland” list. Dun Angus on the Aran Islands was much more worthwhile. We army crawled out to the edge and stuck our necks over. There’s nothing quite like immanent death to wake you up in the morning. It’s slightly ridiculously looking over a cliff edge, screaming, and clinging to the ground for dear life when you realize that if you were hanging over your bedside, you wouldn’t be nearly as scared. Probably. I was just excited that if I did accidentally partake in the 100-meter plummet, it would be faster than any sprint I’ve done in my life. Maybe that’s how people in the west keep winning.
I wish I was as fearless as my water bottle.
                Hanna and I went out most nights for live music. Irish people have a habit of playing “Sweet Home Alabama”. I had no idea that they all lived there.
                I also realized I have a habit of ordering food I don’t like. In high school, I once ordered sausage and gravy before realizing that this meant there would be gravy smothering the deliciousness out of my food. In Galway, I asked for calamari. There’s nothing quite like having fried rubber for dinner.