Tuesday, April 13, 2010

stupidly gigantic post about my trip to ireland and scotland

we met my brother in dublin

where we started the beginning of too much drinking


...here's a random duck cushion from one of the irish churches...

...in dublin we posed with odd looking statues...

...and met a mummified cat and mouse... that got stuck inside an organ pipe...

... found a guitar center... in case rani ever wants to live there...

...had a chat with oscar wilde's statue...

...and went inside the tartus... which is nothing like the one in dr who... this one was filled with broken glass and strange smells


we went to an irish beach... just south of dublin... where i touched the irish sea with my american hand...

super cool pose time!!!somber pose time!!!

i later almost slipped off a muddy cliff... to my possible death on some jagged rocks and crashing waves about 30 feet below... kristie and jp didn't see it happen... they were just happily scantering off ahead...i'm still not sure they believe me... there are no pictures to prove this... but i did have some really muddy pants and gloves... i actually had to throw myself to the ground in the opposite direction to stop myself from going over... it was fairly scary... ireland almost got me



we went to the guiness factory... where people on video screens brag about their various guiness accomplishments... and where my brother got to learn how to pour his own guiness from the tap... its slow

then he drank it

then we went to the top floor where we looked out over dublin and had more guiness

and below is what happens after you have too much guiness
i eventually realized... i don't really like guiness... its kind of gross...

near the end of the ireland trip we went to some famous prison... where this terrible tour guide told angry monotone stories about children starving to death and people being shot in the head...
then we had tea and scones... yum yum


next... we went to glasgow scotland... my old homeland... or... actually where i lived for 6 months once... but i prefer to think of it as my birthplace...
... so anyway... in glasgow... we did lots of shopping at the pound store... we went to see dragons... and i took kristie to this amazing cathedral shown below... which was closed... 20 minutes early that day... which was annoying... but its a church... so you can't really yell angrily through the locked door... i mean... you could... but it might be in poor taste

...then i showed her the super-cool old graveyard behind the cathedral... which i still think is one of the best graveyards i've ever been to

and we had dinner with my friends alan and helen... and i got my delicious veggie haagas at the cool pub near my old flat... babbity bowsers


the next day kristie and i went to edinburgh... which she liked way better than glasgow... which makes her a crazy person... cause glasgow is teh awesome... in edinburgh we ate a really yummy cheese and egg mayo baked potato...

...this was at the sort of famous... "the baked potato shop"... which is on the road going up the hill toward edinburgh castle

we found rocco the cat's restaurant

and bobby the dog's bar

where i got to pet bobby's statue...

and drink really really gross scotch... which i diluted with alot of water
here's bobby's wikipedia page... where you can learn about this cool little pooch... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greyfriars_Bobby

oh and i also bought some cool black t-shirts in edinburgh... that you can't get anywhere else in the world... like this spider-pig t-shirt from the simpsons... good luck finding that awesome shirt anywhere else
oh... and of course... i got my burger king bean burger... which was as delicious as always... even kristie liked it... and she's super picky


...on our last day i took my scottish friends on a tour of stirling... which i had gone to 8 years previously... and i thought i remembered it being the best castle i'd ever seen... it was maybe not quite that amazing... but still pretty cool... i think i remember the small sheep castle being cooler... but that one had that weird dead sheep thing going on all around it... and it was closed so we couldn't go inside... so i don't know why i liked that one more... anyway... below is a pic of us meeting at the train station having some breakfast and waiting for alan's brother christopher

of course i'm awful at remembering directions... and even more awful when i've only been to a place once... 8 years ago... so i let alan lead the way through stirling even though he'd never been there... we decided to walk to the wallace monument... which was about a 10 hour walk... give or take 8 or 9 hours... and after walking all over dublin and scotland for the past week... kristie and my legs were starting to feel like some form of melted jello pudding
below you can see the wallace monument... it kept looking farther away the closer we got to it... luckily there was a great little small town scottish pub on the way... where a few people were watching soccer... and i had some yummy beer that i can't remember the name of... "something best"... anyone know?... wait... no one is actually reading all of this... i only write this whole thing for amila... cause i know she likes it... i think kristie might read some of it too... but i can't be completely sure
below you can see... we finally made it to the wallace monument... i asked a guard where the old william wallace statue that looked like mel gibson was... and he said everyone thought it was dreadful... so they got rid of the stupid thing... also mel gibson keeps getting crazier and crazier... and i'm not sure if they want him too closely associated with the fight for scottish independence... so i took a picture of the monument with the original statue on the side... that doesn't look at all like mel gibson

and here's a picture of part of the inside of stirling castle... we managed to get a bus to get most of the way there... but still had to walk up a winding hill for about 20 minutes... jello pudding legs and all


i finished off the trip at my connection at london airport where i had a 3 hour wait... luckily i was saved by my favorite UK sandwich place, pret a manger...
i had neglected to do my usual pret trip this time, having done obrien's sandwiches 3 times instead... which was a terrible mistake, because only two of the obrien's trips were really yummy, which left one failed trip that would have been perfect for pret a manger...

so to make up for it i got 2 sandwiches and one of their amazing banana cakes... i had one of the best sandwiches in the world at the airport... and saved the second best sandwich in the world for dinner on the plane... yay... no airplane food for me...
if you are ever in new york and accidentally run into this UK sandwich shop, don't make the mistake of passing by without eating one of the greatest sandwiches of your life

om nom nom nom nom...
oh no... now i'm getting a craving for that egg mayo and cheese baked potato... soooo good