With sad and somewhat glazed eyes I left Ireland with the hope to return soon. The smell of airplane food and fake smiles of the stewardess’ awaited me at the gate of Aer Lingus. Before I knew it, I was thousands of feet above Ireland flying back home to Chicago.
It took me two days to get over the jet lag, and roughly 25 hours of sleep. However, when I finally came about, there was a lingering feeling in me that I had not fulfilled everything I had hoped to accomplish while in Ireland.
Looking back at the 10 days while in Ireland, I feel like I didn’t get to sightsee as much as I should have. There were specific students who went out of there way to go and see parts of Ireland that I wish I had been able to do as well.
I didn’t get to kiss the Blarney Stone. One of Ireland’s quintessential attractions, a visit to Blarney Castle, Co. Cork and kissing the Blarney Stone is high on most people’s list of things to do in Ireland. While I was told not to kiss the stone due to vandalism reasons, you never know I could have been granted the “gift of the gab.”
I didn’t get to enjoy a Medieval Banquet at Bunratty Castle where guests get to dine medieval style with goblets, daggers and serving wenches, at the castle. This was even on my list of attractions to go to.
While I did get to tour the Guinness Storehouse and craft my own pint, I want to take a Whiskey Tour and sample some of Ireland’s famous brands of whiskey – that’s whiskey with an “e” at the Old Jamesons Distillery in Dublin, the Old Midleton Distillery near Cork or the oldest licensed distillery in the world; Old Bushmills in Northern Ireland.
The one sight I did want to see above all was go gaze at the Cliffs of Moher in Co. Clare are one of Ireland’s most photographed landmarks, where the world seemingly just drops into the ocean at its sheer cliff face. They are a photo opportunity that’s not to be missed, which I did! While some of my fellow classmates were having these amazing photo opportunities I was working on my articles.
Yes, I hate to admit that I missed great opportunities while in Ireland due to working. I am so headstrong and wanted to make sure I had the sources that were needed for my two articles. I was out speaking with employment offices, getting statistics and speaking with gamblers from The Liberties.
It would not be until two days before we departed from Ireland that a fellow student of mine, who was equally stressed about these articles, was informed that these articles were not going to be graded as harshly as we were originally told. I could have spent so much more of my time doing things in Ireland, getting a feel for their culture and historical places; yet I wasted it away focusing on two articles.
I always dreamt of coming to Ireland and exploring the ancient ruins, castles and architecture. This all being said, I have an advantage my fellow students did have; graduate school in London. Yes! Muah-ha-ha! I can come back next year and accomplish all my sightseeing dreams! I can have my cake and eat it to!
Next year I will be in London, only a plane or boat ride away from Ireland. This means I can come visit all the places I had longed to see while being there for the 10 days. While you’re sitting there reading this blog post that read like a sad and desperate attempt at fulfilling my dreams while in Ireland, I hit you with that!
So, no worries. I will be back to Ireland soon enough to accomplish the sightseeing all my fellow classmates were able to cram into 10 days. I will be back Ireland! Just you wait and see what I have to bring to the table; it’s better than your stout Guinness. Well, maybe not, that was pretty damn good! Muah-ha-ha!