Monday, August 06, 2007

the land of little green men, part one

i should probably start by warning you that, sadly, the next few posts will be free of visual aids. i hate to disappoint you, but let me point out that you're not likely to take it nearly as hard as i did when i realized that my new (hand me down from mama) camera did not feel the need to share with my laptop any of the fabulous photos i took in dublin and belfast during our first two days in ireland.

i was almost as thrilled then as i was about finding out about the lack of photo evidence of my smooching the blarney stone, but that's another story for another post. (don't worry- i won't forget.)

at any rate, technical difficulties aside, and without further ado.....

day one: getting from here to there

i was a little nervous when told at the airtran ticket counter in charlotte that a seat wasn't assigned to me. i mean, when i ordered my tickets, i had seats. were thos rows tossed off the plane to make room for extra exit rows or something? as my (hopefully) fellow passengers boarded the plane, i noticed that three of us were left over: a girl roughly my age, an upper-middle aged woman, and myself. as luck would have it, the three of us wound up in first class.

i'm not sure why the other two ladies wound up in first class, but as far as i'm concerned, it was my belated birthday gift from the airline. how they knew i wanted a bag of tgi friday's tato skins instead of five mini pretzels in a vacuum sealed bag was anyone's guess, but i'll take it.

not only did i get a snack upgrade and not one, but two (two!) drinks during my hourlong (yeah, figures- these things will never happen during a cross country flight to phoenix, for some strange reason) flight to atlanta, but i also had entertainment, in the form of the upper middle aged woman, who wound up in the seat next to mine. in the space of an hour, i heard enough about her (recently ended) marriage to become adequately reassured that running screaming in the opposite direction is the only sane action to take when presented with an engagement ring.

the most important piece of advice from this dear lady is something that really should appear in "dear abby" sooner rather than later:

always be sure to check for signs of mental illness before getting married.

the flight from atlanta to boston was relatively uneventful. however, should you ever find yourself flying into/out of boston logan airport on airtran airlines, be forwarned- the terminal may or may not actually exist. i mean, there's a building there, but it's not labeled, and there are even airport employees who are unaware of its existence. very encouraging sign, i assure you.

after meeting up with mama in boston (how she found her way to my unmarked terminal is beyond me, though i'm glad she did), we headed over to the international flight area, where i got a great picture of a cow in the airport. (wait- was it a cow, or some other kind of animal? i'd check my photos, but the mystery animal was one of the photos nuked by my oh-so-helpful new camera.)

we got a not so great meal on the plane, though i shouldn't complain too much, because when was the last time you were on a flight where they actually provided something more than a half-size can of soda and bag of five pretzels without charging you five bucks for it? i think the large brown object in my hot meal was chicken, but decided discretion was the better part of valor and concentrated on my cheese and three leaves of lettuce salad instead.

after a brief stop in shannon (in western ireland), we arrived at the dublin airport and cleared customs just in time to narrowly miss the first pickup of our tour group. however, the unintended quality time spent at the airport allowed us ample time to hit the atm (woo-hoo! euros!), purchase my first three books (how could i pass up a "3 for the price of 2" sale? i mean, anyone who knows me knows i have a slight book habit. which reminds me- three of my goals for the next year (so far) are book-related.), and scribble my first handful of postcards...which i got around to mailing later in the day.

in the next thrilling episode: still no pictures, but i nearly become trapped in a bathroom and try my first guinness- though not necessarily in that order.


The Rover said...


Did you say your first Guinness? Ever? No wonder you're still 5 foot nothin'!!!

Though, as with Guinness, I do have a special place in my heart for all that is pint-sized. Including witty blogger gals.

duff said...

interestingly enough, i have yet to finish my first guinness- but i don't want to spoil the post i'm about to write.....