The sound of silence

Dubliners often think of County Wicklow as their playground and, while I guess this must be annoying to people from Wicklow at times, I'm no exception. Whenever you find yourself on the top of the slightest hill in generally-flat Dublin there are the Wicklow Mountains, right to the south. I love the view from the Rathmines Bridge with the city buildings and the mountains as a backdrop. When you've access to a car, as I sometimes do, and it's not the commuters' rush hour, you can reach the wild mountains from the city centre in less than half an hour.

All of this is a long-winded introduction to something I read in the paper this morning.

This weekend, there's what has got to be the coolest festival EVER, and it's on in Wicklow; it's a festival of silent and "lost" films, and it's going to be held in a big, old, stately home. I am desperately trying to figure out a way to get to it, because it just sounds fabulous. I hate to say it, but I'm even sorry I accepted an invitation to the rugby match, because this is so much more my thing.

It's called the "Kilruddery Film Festival". Check it out. It looks so amazing.

Take me out to the ball game, take me out to the park...

I'm going to be taken to a ball game!

It's true that this is not necessarily my sort of thing, but what the hey. The sun has been shining, and I'm prepared to have a great time. Bepe had two tickets to the match, but his friend has had to fly back to Italy to attend a family funeral, and as all his other sports-enthusiast friends are working, well, he's invited me.

Sure, I thought about trying to sell the ticket on ebay. Just kidding. It was really very sweet of him to invite me. So Rugby Match here I come. I've been looking at the Six Nations website to see if I can figure out what it's all about, and the short answer is that I can't. However, from my, ah, research, I have gleaned the following information:

1) Unlike soccer players, rugby players are rarely very good-looking, but there are a few exceptions;
2) There are people called "dangermen". I don't know what they do;
3) There's a rather cute player on the Welsh team called Leigh Halfpenny, which is one of the best names I've ever heard of. Of course, I want Ireland to win, but I'd also like to see some action from Leigh. No, wait. I don't mean that the way it sounds.

Anyway, it's so nice of Bepe to invite me when I'm sure I'm the last person he'd really like to go with as I'm totally ignorant about sport in general and rugby in particular.

It's so lovely weatherwise at the moment, I'm eating lunch outside most days. I took this picture on my phone today, of crocuses in Stephen's Green. I love these little guys; they look like candles and just seem so optimistic somehow. And flashy, without being pretentious. All-round good guys of the flower world.

Ooh and tonight I am taking the nice lady who organised my weekend job out for a glass of wine at the Ely Wine Bar, just to say "thanks". Someone recommended that place here, so I'm looking forward to trying it out ... and hoping she doesn't order the most expensive thing on the menu :-)

bright, bright sunshine!

And I've been in a fabulous mood all week. Until today. I was walking through the front gate at college when I found myself unable to avoid bumping into my ex-boyfriend. I don't care if he thinks now that he wasn't "really" going out with me. He behaved like he was, he talked like he was and y'know what they say: If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck...

Anyways, turns out he is engaged. And get this: "You must come to the afters of the wedding," he says. (In Ireland, "the afters" is the bit when the band plays, after the meal).

Excuse my language but WTF? Why would I want to do something like that? I don't know what I ever saw in that guy. PhD or no PhD, he must be stupid. And between you and me, his PhD topic is one of the WORST I have EVER heard of. Honestly.

The weather is beautiful. It's bright and sunny. It's also doing that funny spring thing of being alternately warm and cold, depending on whether the sun is behind a cloud or not. I took this picture to show someone with bare arms walking just behind a lady in an overcoat, but sadly the bare-arm guy isn't very visible. Still, you get the gist. A lot of the locals are rushing about in short sleeves, but it's not really quite warm enough for that. Still, it's so lovely seeing everything in the parks come to life. I am amazed every year by how apparently dead sticks suddenly produce green leaves and flower buds. Here's hoping the sun will be shining next week on St Patrick's Day.

Another shot of Dublin in the sun. I love the way there's always -- literally always -- a seagull overhead. There are times when I almost forget we're on the sea, because I live downtown and the city centre is focused around the river. But the sea is never more than short, brisk cycle away!

So I received some advice about a wine bar to visit, the Ely Wine Bar. On first glance, it looks lovely but maybe a little too grown up for me? Then I remembered that I bumped into that nice lady who gave me some research advice and introduced me to her friend who now hires me to watch her kids ... and I thought, what the heck. I'm gonna call her right now and see if she's free one evening this week. Things are going pretty well with those kids and the 70 yoyos (as my greengrocer refers to Euros) don't hurt, either ;-)