Ireland: Bus trip to Dun Laoghaire
After the Doolin Cave, Heath and I went back to the hostel, grabbed our stuff and went to find some grub at one of the very few options available before the bus came to take us to Dublin. As we were eating we realized that we didn’t have enough cash for both lunch and bus tickets. So we asked the waitress where the closest ATM was and she responded, “Seven miles… that way”. Ha! Well good thing they took credit cards.
On that note, let me explain the credit card system here in The Netherlands. Since the pin card, or debit card, is used throughout the Netherlands but not really any other country… you have to use a “credit card” to travel with. However, every month they automatically take out the balance of your card from your checking account. It’s pretty much a fail-proof way of not going into debt but it stinks because no money = no fun! 🙂
Anyways… as we were waiting for yet another bus, I snapped this photo. Gaelic is still a language spoken in Ireland so all of the street signs are in both Gaelic and English!
The bus rides here in Ireland can be a little frightening. I tried to remind myself that they do this everyday but when you’re bouncing around on a road by a cliff that’s barely big enough for the bus, let alone a passing car, you tend to get a little nervous and hang on pretty tight. Heath thought it would be a good idea to sit in the very first row. Click here to get a feel for the ride! They don’t really slow down when approaching turns or when other cars approach and the other side of the bus is off the road most of the time. At one point the driver was going a solid 85 km/h. I decided to take the video after the worst was over with! Just in case…
We had to go back to Galway first to get on another bus to Dublin. When we arrived we had only 8 minutes until the bus departed (from another station). So we ran over and then realized you can only buy the ticket from the driver and with cash. However… we only had enough money for the bus ticket to get to Galway! Heath just took off running for an ATM. With two backpacks and flip flops on. They said they would hold the bus for 5 minutes. Well… there went the 5 minutes and still no Heath. The bus driver was kind enough to say he would drive around the building and if Heath was back by then they would pick us up in front of the building. Ha. Luckily, Heath made it! Sweating and out of breath, but he made it.
It was another lovely ride back to the other coast. But we were tired of bus rides at this point! When we finally arrived in Dublin we then had to find how to get to our hotel in Dun Laoghaire. (pronounced Dun Leary… yeah figure that one out!) It took asking about 3 people, walking around following tram tracks and having a general sense of direction to finally find the DART station. After a short ride we made it to our destination! The Royal Marine Hotel. After staying in college dorms and hostels we treated ourselves to a nicer hotel. Besides, it was buy 2 nights get 1 free through Expedia!
So with our tired bodies, bus stench and four backpacks we crawl into the four star hotel reception. This scene is classic. Before we can even open our mouths the well-groomed man behind the counter very snobbishly says, “Looking for a bed?”. Heath just laughs. I respond, “Yes, and we should have a reservation.” He confirms that indeed we do have a reservation. Heath dared to ask, “Do we have a bay view?” The man responds, “You booked through Expedia. No view, no breakfast!”. Ha! Way to make your scruffy guests feel welcome!
We showered off our grunge and decided to just relax for once this trip! We had a lovely dinner and wine and called it a night!