Some happy moments of Christmas 2017

There are not too many photos of this Christmas time. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t anything to remember. Even if things are so different, even if it has taken so much time and effort inside myself to accept it, even if I can never totally accept it, there have been nice, lovely and unforgettable moments and lots of love around me. I cannot deny it and I am learning to live with it, at least I am trying. I know that I am not perfect and sometimes it feels like I’m on the American mountains or on a rollercoaster and sometimes it feels that there’s a rollercoaster running inside me and I never know if I am up or down. It takes so little to get from up to down and it’s good that then up again.

But the GPO was decorated for Christmas as it has been every year. The Belvedere Boys were singing and having their sleepover outside for charity. The streets of Dublin wereĀ lighted with Christmas lights. The shops were full of people and sales. Even the Luas had started to run and I had even a chance to try it.

And I got some nice presents, some really nice presents. And we together also got some nice presents – 2 gift cards to 2 nice restaurants and we tried them both and even more. So really, I have never visited so many restaurants in Dublin than I have now since this June 2017. But I would give back all these restaurants and trips and everything if I could change the life back. But I know that the God or whoever decides theseĀ things won’t make this deal with me. And I know pretty well, that this is the way of thinking that I mustn’t do, so that’s why I said that I am learning to live with it and I am doing my best.

But the food was good, both in Salamanca and in Zaragoza and we enjoyed it a lot. And it reminded our Barcelona trip and the fantastic tapas that we got there. And we will go there again one day, not for this birthday but we definitely will.

 

 

Christmas is near again

It seems that Santa has noticed me again šŸ™‚ it has started to happen since my close connection to Ireland, so it makes me think that maybe he’s Irish and doesn’t live on the North Pole at all. Ok, I know that he isn’t but being together with someone who really likes Christmas and when he’s Irish, it just makes you think like that. And it also makes you like Christmas a bit differently than before – it feels like you are a child again who gets excited about all these lights, shop windows, TV-programs, cute little bric-a-brac in the shops and of course the presents. It’s a good feeling and why can’t I enjoy being a child again after my own children have grown up. Actually, it feels nice to be spoiled a little and it really feels amazing to be loved so much.

And now I would like to send my wish somewhere there – and this is my only wish and it has to be heard.Ā Christmas time is the time for all the wishes and miracles to come true and I just have only this one. I hope that it reaches the right place.

Here is what Santa said to me with the help of The Love of My Life šŸ™‚ And there are just 15 days to count, so I am almost there.

Christmas_wish

 

Trick or Treat

Halloween has always seemed a very AmericanĀ thing for me and I was quite surprised when I found out that the tradition has originally started from Ireland. As I knew that we were starting to make the Jack-o’lantern, I wanted to find out where that tradition had come from and found a story about Stingy Jack who tricked the Devil and after his death was not allowed to enter neither Heaven nor Hell. So he has been wandering around ever since and using a burning coal in a carved turnip to light his way. To keep him away from the households, people started to make the same kind of lanterns and put them on the doorways during the Samhain, which is a Gaelic festival held after the harvest time to celebrate the end of the autumn and the beginning of the winter. When the Irish started to emigrate to the States, they took this tradition with them, but as there were no turnips in America, they started to use pumpkins instead.

Another new thing that I had never heard before was the Halloween Brack – a sweet bread with raisins and sultanas. It tasted a little bit like a sponge cake but the most interesting part was hidden inside the Brack. In the past, the Brack was used as a fortune teller and you had to be quite careful when eating it because it couldn’t be very safe to bite a coin, a stick, an old cloth, a pea or even a ring but these things were hidden in the Brack and every single one had a special meaning. When you found a pea it meant that you were not going to marry that year, not the worst thing that could happen. Finding a stick was much worse – you would have an unhappy marriage (and a broken tooth sometimes), the cloth would mean bad luck (but probably didn’t break your teeth), the coin would show that you would become rich and the ring, of course, meant that you were going to marry soon. Nowadays only rings are hidden inside the Bracks and you don’t have to worry about the bad luck or unhappy marriage.

The ring was wrapped into a smallĀ piece of soft paper but it was quite hidden anyway šŸ™‚

I really enjoyed the decorated houses and the dressed up people here and there. In the city centre, I met a girl with scissors in her head and on our way back home there were lots of dressed up families walking around, probably going to trick and treat. And of course, lots of children came to knock on our door and got their candies. Just one girl said more than “trick and treat”, she asked a tricky question.

And why I am writing this today and why I am surprised that the American, British and Irish children get their candies for just “trick and treat”. It’s because today it’s MardipƤev (St Martin’s Day) in Estonia, and we have also quite a similar tradition here to dress up and go from door to door. It’s an old tradition and is also connected with the end of the harvesting season and the beginning of winter. On that day children dress up as men and go from door to door, sing songs, make jokes, even dance and then they will get their candies (or apples or nuts or some money) and they don’t say “trick or treat”. They tell the story that they are poor Martinman beggars who have had a long journey and who want to come in to warm their toes and fingers which are aching because of cold šŸ™‚

mardisandid
Some St Martin’s Day Beggars from the 90’s

Lunch at Powerscourt Hotel

It’s amazing how many nice places you can find just at a stone’s throw of Dublin. It took about half an hour by car and we were in a different world which was beautiful and surrounded by stunning nature. The hotel itself was also nice and so was the restaurant and the food. And we were lucky that the shower passed just when we were sitting inside and enjoying our lunch looking at the Sugarloaf Mountain behind the window.

After the lunch when the rain had stopped we walked around and explored the hotel and the surroundings. Unfortunately, it was too late to go into the gardens but we will definitely do it the next time. At least I got a glimpse how beautiful it was and we spent a wonderful Sunday afternoon.

Another park on my list

This summer is a bit different. But every summer has its warm days, nice days and days when you just want to step out of reality, even if it lasts only for a little while. Have been staying near a big green and probably nice park but still haven’t had a chance to walk around there. Today I had a chance and even if it wasn’t the warmest day of this summer I tried to forget it and made it a summer day. And it was again a time to test my new camera. I hope that I will start to love it. At the moment I am still quite confused how to use it properly but so far it has been a great fun anyway.

 

 

Malahide again

This time we didn’t go to the Castle but just wanted to have an early dinner. The first place that we tried didn’t have anything appetizing, so we drove around and decided to head to Malahide town, a nice place beside the sea.

malahideThe weather was brilliant and we found a nice local restaurant which offered monkfishĀ as their specials. who can say no for a monkfish, especially when it’s so well cooked? We couldn’t and had monkfish, all three of us.

Malahide seemed to be a nice small town where I would love to come back and wander around a bit more. The seaside walking paths will take you back to Dublin and that’s what I’d like to do one day – take a bus and then walk as long as I can.

And I could wear my new dress šŸ™‚

Me and Dublin alone

I have been here so many times that I know exactly where to go and how to take shortcuts, how to find my favourite places and what to expect. This time I was walking around to test my new camera and start to get on well with it. And to get rid of thinking, which is something that I am probably not able to do. But I found out that even without knowing too much about all the settings on my camera, it’s still a good meditative activity and gives you a purpose to come out and walk around.

I started from the RemembranceĀ Gardens, which I pass every day but don’t usually enter. This time I even sat on the bench and enjoyed the warm and sunny day, admired the flowers, listened to a bit of the tour guide talking about Lir’s Children and took a photo of 4 foreign school girls who wanted to pose altogether.

It was a good position to make some shots also from the church on the corner, where I still haven’t been. So I tried to find the right angle for getting the church right.

My next stop was by the river where I took the Bachelor’s walk to get some photos of the bridges. Just some days ago I had read an article about the Bachelor’s Walk and how careful you have to be there not to be robbed. Unfortunately, it has become a place where the junkies gather and try to get money for their next dose. I didn’t see any of them but saw quite a lot of drunk people and the cafes that are located on the bank of the river didn’t seem the places where you could want to sit down. What a shame it is that the town has let it happen because that could be a nice place for walking and enjoying the town. I was careful and took some photos of the bridges and the Liffey itself. Meanwhile, the nice weather turned into some showers but it passed quickly.

The last stop of my walk with the camera was at Christ Church where I have been several times before but not like that, taking photos and not posing on them šŸ™‚ Usually, when you are walking with others, you just cannot take so much time to stop and take photos from different angles and of every little thing that captures your mind.

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Geting a bit Scientific

Dublin Science Gallery is a small place and you won’t probably find it if you don’t know where to go. But it’s a place where you can touch, feel and play and therefore it’s highly recommended for families with children. Ok, we didn’t have any children with us but we can act like them by ourselves without problems šŸ™‚

We walked around, touched and tried out everything that was meant for trying, I even tried to swing and play some instruments that sounded like drums or something similar. Even if we didn’t spend there a long time it was a nice change and worth visiting.