travel

Day 9: Goodbyes and train to Dublin

Sunday, March 20

On Sunday we finally had to say goodbye. I’m such a sap, so I had to fight back some tears while hugging my sis. Always stinks, because it’s usually such a long time before I see her again.

Basically, this was a transition day. Our only real plans involved doing some of the necessary evils of travel: some actual traveling.

Fortunately, we didn’t really need to get moving too early, so we were able to enjoy a slow, relaxed morning all together, one last time. We had tea/ coffee/breakfast and the kids played with their cousins, said goodbye to the chickens, etc.

Around 11:30 a.m. my Dad, Mom, brother-in-law and I headed out to go return our rental car. This was a little bit of a tricky situation, because there is no rental car office close to my sister’s house. In fact, on the day we arrived, my sister had to drive my Dad and Ivan an hour or so to the town where they do have a rental car office, at a smaller airport. (We couldn’t rent one in Dublin, because the 6 of us + luggage wouldn’t have fit!!)

Anyway, long story short, we had to split up the number of bodies in each vehicle to get to the train stations, so I had to ride along for the rental car return. Ivan stayed with the boys and my sister, to help deal with loading up our stuff into her van.

No pictures from this part- I just rode along in the car and looked out the window for an hour. ๐Ÿ™‚ We followed my brother-in-law, who waited for us while we turned the car in. (Otherwise, we would have turned in the car and then been….stuck there!) He then dropped us off at a nearby train station, to catch the train to Dublin.

In the meantime, my sister was driving everyone else to the other train station (much closer to their house). Ivan and the boys got on the train there in Westport, and then we hopped on a little later down the route, as it came by our station. We were really hoping that when we boarded Ivan and the boys would be there, as planned. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Whew! A lot of moving parts there!

The end result- the rental car was turned in, and we were all on the train to Dublin. Success. ๐Ÿ™‚

Train Ride

The ride to Dublin is something like….3 1/2 hours long? I can’t remember exactly. It’s long enough to feel a little long. But, it was smooth and easy and no one had to drive. ๐Ÿ™‚

Ivan and my sister had swung by a store I think on the way to the train station, because the boys wanted some more of these Cadbury chocolate eggs that they discovered and really liked. So they stayed occupied eating a bunch of those. Ha.

I also made them stop playing on their phones long enough to each read one of the books I’d brought along about Rome. (If you recall, before we left, I picked up several from the Who Was series. We read a couple together, but never finished them.) I had books about the Colosseum, Julius Caesar, Pope Francis, and the Vatican.

Finally made it to Dublin:

train station

We got in the taxi line and had to wait quite a long time. LOTS of taxis came by, but the line was long, and there were 6 of us….not very many minivans came by. Finally, we got one, and we (and all of our stuff) were off to our airport hotel. By this time it was after 5 pm.

I had booked a nice little airport hotel in Dublin- nothing too exciting, and NOT downtown. We really just needed quick and easy access to the airport, since we had to be there before 8 am in the next morning. The hotel was just 5 minutes from the airport, and it was a simple but VERY nice hotel, for our purposes! It worked out great. I’d definitely stay there again.

It was evening already, and we had a big day coming up the next morning, so our evening plans were just: get dinner.

Dinner!

I had made sure there were some restaurants nearby when I booked the hotel. There was actually a very cool American style restaurant right next door called Hogs and Heifers.

I think there may be other locations worldwide. It’s very “American”. For a brief moment I felt guilty, going to a burger place like this while in Ireland….I mean, we eat at brewpub type places ALL the time at home. (It’s kind of our favorite type of place- in part because my Dad and Ivan love craft beer, and also just for the relaxed, hangout vibe.) I wondered if we should maybe take a cab somewhere to an authentic Irish restaurant instead? After all, we were in Dublin….

But, this was extremely convenient, looked like a cool place, had a good menu, and….you know what? We’d already been to a lot of Irish pubs all week. So, this worked. Besides, we wanted to get to bed fairly early before our flights the next day, and this was just a 2 minute walk from the hotel’s front door.

We had a super nice dinner!! I had the most amazing burger. I mentioned this before, but oh my goodness, the meat in Ireland is so good!

After the busy week with lots of action, it was nice to just sit, decompress, rehash the previous week a bit and gear up for the next part of our trip. ๐Ÿ™‚

2 thoughts on “Day 9: Goodbyes and train to Dublin”

  1. I bet the goodbye to your sister was so sad. Since you are each other’s only siblings, and are both girls, I imagine you are really close. As 1 of 5, I feel like our relationship dynamics are so different. I am closest to my youngest sister – she’s 7 years younger than me and her daughter is 3 months younger than Taco, so we are in contact quite a bit. But my closeness with everyone else kind of ebbs and flows. I had to say goodbye to my sister in June and we won’t know when we will see each other again, but I think I was too distracted by getting everything packed/loaded in the car to let myself think how long we’ll go until we see each other again! But having her in AZ v having a sister overseas is so different!!

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  2. If it makes you feel any better, my sister and I always bawl our eyes out whenever we have to say goodbye (and honestly, we also bawl when we see each other after a long time LOL)…. it’s hard to live so far from your sibling. I can absolutely relate.

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