Academics, touring campus, Grafton Street and medieval Dublin

Early in the morning, a light rain was coming down and birds were squawking around the buildings. I didn’t have to start getting ready for the day just yet, so I sat by the window and wrote in my Celtic knotwork-covered journal. It was relaxing just to capture the calm atmosphere of the moment in words, a cool breeze entering my room as I jotted down thoughts.

The weather, at least when drizzling rather than a downpour, reminded me of the 2011 movie, “Midnight in Paris.” Particularly because the main character wanted to take a stroll around the city through the raindrops. I loved that movie and of course, Paris is another city I’d love to go to. Who knows? Visiting Ireland came true and that has inspired more hope of traveling to other countries on my must-see list.

Being in Dublin for the first time, I loved even the nearest views around our Irish accommodations. The campus had so many charming details, from the courtyard outside of our houses and vines growing around windows to the architecture of older buildings.

Leafy Window

A short walk over cobblestone led us to the campus dining spot, The Buttery, where we could use a breakfast voucher during our stay. Everything was a delicious pick-me-up to get through the early hours.

Buttery Food

Following our first meal of the day on Aug. 3, we headed over to the conference center for a class meeting. The academic part of the trip was business-oriented, particularly to learn about it on an international level. For that reason, the class started out with a discussion about cultures, norms, values and how they would apply to how companies in Ireland are run. This would help us as we continued to work on our business proposal assignments; my idea revolved around photography.

As the day continued, there was a great deal more to take pictures of while exploring nearby Grafton Street. The famous shopping district was lively, with artists entertaining passersby and cafes offering street views. Outside of one pub, I spotted the statue of Thin Lizzy lead singer, Philip P. Lynott. Although I never knew much of the group’s music, I like the song, “The Boys Are Back in Town.”

Thin Lizzy

Several of us decided to check out Bewley’s for a quick bite to eat. Just inside, the desserts at the counter were so tempting!

Bewley Cup Cakes

Bewley Tiramisu

Back on campus, we gathered for a guided tour of Trinity College. We also received tickets to see the Book of Kells at the Old Library, although they could be used later in the week if not after the campus tour. Our guide’s own education included Trinity and he shared a lot of historical facts. A few stories he told were funny and his sense of humor added some laughs along the way. One particular interesting point was when we were standing on the cobblestone by the Campanile. He told us what was beneath where we stood; I feel like keeping it a surprise for others to find out while there. Anyway, it was memorable to me because I never would’ve imagined that myself. I wondered how many people walked over that spot who didn’t take the tour and that piece of information remained unknown to them.

Campanile

This old building is next to The Buttery’s entrance and with its foreboding architecture, it’s also my favorite on campus. We never went inside, but it features a lot of stunning detail on the outside alone.

Gloomy TCD Bldg

Old architecture wasn’t the only design at Trinity College. “Sphere With Sphere” added an element of modern art that drew many admirers. Behind it is the Museum Building, with many intricate details, giving it a unique appearance.

Sphere

After the campus tour, I joined a few from our global studies group to wander around Dublin. We covered a lot of ground, even going beyond most tourist-filled areas of the city. A castle tower came into view; it was Dublin Castle, which picqued our curiosity to go inside. Other tourists were exiting through a doorway into a hall where amazing details could already be seen. Entering the same way, we saw even more spectacular architecture in the cathedral!

Dublin Castle

Castle Cathedral

Continuing through the city, we spotted Christ Church and across from it, a little fountain several steps down from the street level. The flowery hedges around the fountain allowed for pretty views of the church.

Christ Church

Fountain

Back up on street level, we walked down a street with old doors and a building covered in overgrowth. I loved how it looked because back home, I only saw long-abandoned houses with nature growing up the exterior walls. They always looked so mysterious and it gave the same vibe to this building, which seems to be in use.

Overgrowth

I also loved seeing so many places decorated with baskets of flowers, from houses to pubs and other businesses, as in the photo below. While on the subject of pubs, I want to leave of here because there was still so much we did that day, including dinner in the Temple Bar area.

Archway Flowers

About caroldwyer

A freelance photographer and blogger, I'm also a non-traditional graduate of Cabrini College with a B.A. in communication, minor in English and concentration in film studies. As a student, I was a staff writer, photographer and copy editor for the Loquitur. In my final semester, I assisted in promoting campus literary events for Woodcrest Literary Magazine. I love travel, historic places, nature, wildlife and the arts. I hope to be involved in some way with one of those areas throughout my media career. Currently, I'm pursuing my M.F.A. in creative writing and publishing. Read my film blog at http://cdwyerfilminspired.wordpress.com - and my literary blog at http://cdwyerbookishgrad.wordpress.com
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