What’s a good thing about museums in Dublin, is that a lot of them are free and worth to visit. On the last day of my stay, we popped into the Natural History Museum near the Merrion Park and had a look at some animals, birds and fish who have inhabited Ireland during the centuries. I think that I have a long way to go to get to know all of these fish and shellfish, which look pretty similar but still are not.
A year ago, on the last day of my stay for the last Christmas and New Year, we visited the other part of the Natural Museum of Ireland – the archaeology part, which is situated in an amazing building that was worth to see by itself. It seems to have become a tradition to start the year with a visit to the museum, not a bad tradition at all.
Now I am trying to remind myself which museums of Dublin I have visited so far. I know that there is still a long way to go, for example, I still haven’t seen the Book of Kells but we have taken it into the plans of summer 2017.
One of the first museums I went to, was Dublinia – a place where you get to know so much about the Vikings and the Medieval Dublin. It is situated near the Christchurch and it gives you a good overlook of history – you can really bump into it, try on some costumes, watch short videos and play games. We enjoyed it in 2014 summer when I was here for the very first time and wanted to get to know everything. We also climbed to the medieval St Michael’s tower and enjoyed the view of the city.
During the first summer, we also visited the Dublin Castle and the Chester Beatty Library – a collection of manuscripts, books, and miniatures which are situated in Dublin Castle. We also spent some hours in Dublin National Art Gallery and in spring of 2016 we went there again to see the exhibition of 10 drawings of Leonardo da Vinci, which was an exhibition – a choice from the Royal Collection, which was displayed in Dublin for a while. In 2016 summer we also visited the High Lane Gallery, which is very near to our home and we pass it almost every single day. It was a marvellous place, much bigger than you expected and was hiding such as famous artists as Monet, Renoir and Rodan. The Gallery hosts also lots of exhibitions and it’s good to keep your eye on it because there could be something new and interesting on all the time.
During my very first summer, we also visited the Kilmainham Gaol – an old prison which acts as a museum right now. This is so much connected with the history of Irish Republic and recently when I was watching a new serial “Rebellion” which talks exactly about the Easter Rising time, it was so interesting to me that I had been there and could get much more out of the serial like that. And I knew that I have been there and seen the place, which makes everything much more interesting.
Besides the museums in Dublin, I have also visited some museums out of Dublin, like the Jameson Whiskey Factory near Cork in summer 2015, Cobh Heritage Centre in Cobh, in 2014 summer, and Irish National Heritage Park, which is an open-air history museum and I visited it when I had my week at the seaside with 2 sisters in 2015 and when we also visited the Most Haunted House in Ireland and spent a marvellous week in spite of the cold and rainy weather that was haunting us all through that summer.
The New Year Festival went on also on the very first day of the New Year and we were not too lazy to get ourselves out to see what was going on. And a lot was going on, especially beside the St Stephen’s Green, where different groups performed to celebrate the New Year despite the cold weather.
At first, we listened to the Garda Band, which was very cheery and joyful. It seemed that the members were from all over the Ireland and enjoyed themselves a lot. And we enjoyed them too, we even didn’t mind the cold and frosty weather. Especially we enjoyed the WMCA song when they asked some children to join them on the stage and make the movements. They knew perfectly how to perform.
After the Gardas there was a Gospel Choir which was really talented. Their repertory consisted of rock and pop classics, like Led Zeppelin, Queen and other well-known stuff. At the end, there was really cold but as they were so good we didn’t want to miss it and stayed till the very end.
I love to stay at home on New Year’s Eve. For me, it’s perfect to have some nice delicious food, watch some nice shows on TV and drink some sparkling wine at midnight and feel that I am loved, happy and enjoying the moment when looking forward to the New Year to come and surprise me.
This year we planned to do it quite the same way – we cooked our NewYear’s dinner, ok, Sean cooked, I just stayed there beside and enjoyed it. This time we had a duck with vegetables and of course, some snacks before and also during the night. I have cooked lots of New Year’s dinners on my own, and also lots of Christmas dinners – all the time when there were just me and my children and sometimes my neighbours, and now, when my children are grown up and having their own Christmas in different parts of the world (who could imagine that years ago), I am just happy to enjoy, that someone is doing that for me and my part is just to be there and enjoy it.
After the dinner, we went to see the Sky Dance – the next show that was taking place at the Custom House. We were well prepared, booked the FREE tickets online and printed them out and took a walk down to the river. It was good that we noticed that the free tickets had to be printed out to get to see the show.
The Sky Dance was very different from anything I had seen before – the dancers were up in the sky, hanging from the tall cranes over the river, on the top of the Custom House and climbing on the walls of the building. that was an amazing way to end the year, with all these flying angels, drummers and girls with floating dresses above your head.
After that, we headed back home to watch Dawn French show and enjoy the Old Tallinn Irish Coffee – a delicious mix of Estonia and Ireland that probably no-one else in Ireland had for their New Year’s Eve 🙂 Ok, there’s not such a secret, you just have to use Old Tallin liqueur instead of Baileys but of course you have to have some Old Tallinn to do that.
And then the New Year Came, 2 hours later than in Estonia 🙂 and we opened our sparkling wine. I hope that all my wishes that I sent to the Place Where the Wishes are Created to Reality are gaining their strength to come back to the real life during this year.
This year the Luminosity Festival had moved by the river side and the show was displayed on Dublin’s Custom House. The first year in 2014 it was on the Trinity Colledge and the last year on the house near St Stephen’s Green, which we, unfortunately, missed because we didn’t find any info and supposed that it still had to be on Trinity’s wall.
This year we were well prepared and went to see it a day before the New Year’s Eve, just in case. It was the first day after the flu when I felt that I wanted to go out and so it was a nice walk from home. Even the weather was nice.
The location of the show was perfect, probably the best of all these three because it was also possible to watch it from the other side of the river and there wasn’t too much traffic in front of the Custom House. But I have to say that I liked the Trinity College Light show the best, maybe because that was my first one. We watched it from the Custom House side at first, then walked over the bridge and watched it once more from the other side.
Now it’s 2016 already, sounds good 🙂 When you sum all the numbers together it will be 9, and 9 is my life number, so it must be a good year for me.
As a year before there was a New Year Parade and it was written on the Internet that there was supposed to be also a Luminosity Show, but as it came out, we were looking for it at a wrong place. This time, it wasn’t on the Trinty College wall, but on some other building near St Stefan’s Green and we found it out when it was over already.
The parade was great, maybe a bit smaller that last year, and there were not so many different vehicles, bicycles, and costumes, but quite enough to enjoy it. The weather was really cold and when the parade over I was really frozen, the first time I felt so frozen in Dublin. So the only way to get some warmth is to go home and make some Irish coffee and start to wait for the new year.
The astonishing 3D projections on Trinity College facade. I was standing there stunned and got it all on video. I think it was the best part of the New Year Celebrations in the city.
The second best was the procession through the streets, even the rain that started to fall quite heavily didn’t ruin it at all. All these colourful costumes and vehicles that passed me made me want to see the St Patrick’s Day Procession. Yes, I know, that one day I will see that too, but just don’t want to wait too long for that.
And the new year 2015 came to us at home where we enjoyed our New Year Dinner and watched The 100 Best musicals on TV. And as we both love musicals it was the best way to celebrate the New Year, the first one that we have really celebrated together.