Top o’ the morning to ye, me fine things! Guess where I am RIGHT. NOW.
That’s right… Ireland!!! Dublin, Ireland, to be exact. I’m here with my mom, and we’re actually staying on the oldest street in the city, Fishamble Street, in the heart of the old city. Our hotel is in Temple Bar, and is a three minute walk from the site of what was once a Viking house, beside Christchurch Cathedral.
It’s been seven days, and I never want to leave.
So. This trip has had two major themes: books and Vikings. And quite a few books about Vikings, too.
The bookish side of the trip has been amazing. We’ve visited Trinity College, where we marveled at the library’s famous Long and were transfixed by the gorgeous Book of Kells. We went into the National Library of Ireland (sadly, the staff seemed immune to my attempts to hypnotize them into offering me a job) and the Writers’ Museum, the Chester Beatty Library and more bookstores than I can count.
And the Vikings. Dear, sweet, baby Thor, the Vikings! As you already know, I’m sure, Dublin was founded by Vikings in 841 CE, so Vikings are integral to an understanding of the city’s history. There are beautiful exhibits at the Museum of Archaeology, and you can visit the excavations beneath Dublin Castle where the Vikings first settled at the black pool, or Duiblinn in Irish, from which the city gets its name. Christchurch Cathedral was originally erected by the delightfully named Sitric Silkenbeard, but alas, it was probably made of wood, so nothing is left.
The best part of the trip, though, has been our two – yes, two – visits to Dublinia, a museum focusing specifically on recreating Vikings and Medieval Dublin.
SEIOUSLY. YOU GUYS. I was in heaven – or Valhalla. I was as happy as Ragnar holding a baby goat.
Here is a picture of me with the King of Dublin. He does not know that I am planning to overthrow him and rule in his place as a vicious and bloodthirsty queen.
Pretty sure that dude had a crush on me.
I’ve bought so many books. It’s hard not to buy even more. Irish books, like British ones, are generally smaller than North American copies, are usually soft-cover, and are light-years ahead in terms of cover deign. I’ve bought a couple more books to add to my Viking resources collection, as well as a copy of Wuthering Heights, Joyce’s Dubliners, Swords of Good Men by Snorri Kristjansson, Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, and Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas. And I read City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett, which was so good that I can’t talk about it yet because I still haven’t recovered yet so review to come next week. But in a nutshell: OH MY GODDD SO GOOD LOVE LOVE LOVE SIGRUD MY HEART EEEEEEEEE!
It’s been an awesome week. I’ve been doing my happy dance every day, as seen below:
As the locals say, bye bye bye bye byeeeeeeeeeee!