Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Irish Beer and Mrs. Brown

Before our guests from England arrive later this afternoon, here's another quickie from my short trip to Dublin last week....

Without getting into the whys and wherefores of how we think of beer and Ireland almost simultaneously, let me just show a bit of what I saw.  And tasted, yes!

 First of all, Catherine and I had rooms at the Blooms Hotel, across the street from Trinity College.
Location, location, location, as they say!
It so happens this hotel gives all its guests a free drink at their Vat House bar (with the hat).
We chose a Guinness, of course, just to pamper me.
Did you know it starts out light when first poured (middle-left) and then "settles" before becoming black!
Neither did I.

 Throughout my 3 days, I saw enough beer vats to drown the sorrows of many armies.

It probably helped that our hotel was in the Temple Bar area of the city, known for it's night life.
But to be honest, there are over 1,000 pubs in Dublin...enough for everyone anywhere.

So, don't be shy.  
Whether a beer or whiskey, you'll be sure to find something you like.
Even a Dutch Heineken!

I know I showed you this in my last post but...I did like my TWO Guinnesses.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Now switch gears to something fun we saw when Catherine, Robin and I were walking around the area.  Remember that Catherine is Irish and actually lived in Dublin once upon a time.  So to have her lead us around to non-touristy places was for Robin and me..."the luck of the Irish!"

One such place was the Moore Street Market, Dublin's oldest food market.
The people who work the stalls have a witty and friendly reputation; 
they and their food stalls are Dublin institutions; and they speak in a strong Dublin accent. (Wiki)
And the women bring their produce in baby buggies!

But THE surprise of the day was finding a TV production filming a segment for Mrs. Brown's Boys.
Yes, that's Mrs. Brown, a.ka. Brendan O'Carroll, Ireland's famous drag-queen/comedian matriarch.
Catherine sent me the very first episode of the sitcom, if you want to get a taste:


And that reminded me of Mr. Charlie Brown from Atlanta, Georgia, our famous drag queen.
Oh dear me.  We took daughter Amy there many eons ago and had a hoot.
He's now 60-something and is even better than I remember.

If you want to see a good Tina Turner impersonation, this is it.
I kid you not!

To be continued after the Brits leave....


  1. I love those pubs, there is so much to see. I have to say, because I am NOT a real beer drinker, I haven't seen many pubs inside. I love the one where you are short of eyes.
    I learned something interesting, we use the word 'vat' too, and the Gauls introduced them to the Romans and they spread the vats all over Europe.
    Markets like that is the real life. That you bumped into Mrs. Brown is just unique.
    We use to get Dame Edna at our Dutch TV, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ysINNySRAo
    It is amazing what you can see and do in 2,5 days. Great memories to keep again.
    One day soon we will go together.

    1. Oh yes, MLMA. We will definitely go to Ireland together for at least a week! Not only Dublin but we'll also go outside the city as far as possible in day trips. I can hardly wait!

  2. Haha Ginnie, I think my favourite photo is of yourself sipping your Guinness like a pro!! You took to it like a duck to water!!
    In case you need an excuse remember they say it is full of iron, lacking any added chemicals and good for your health. Before people knew any better the advertising slogan was "Guinness is good for you!" Imagine growing up with that plastered all over town? So happy you enjoyed our lovely sunny day in Dublin, I'm loving seeing your memories through that meticulous eye of yours and Astrid is going to enjoy it some day soon too. X

    1. I just KNEW Guinness had to be good for me, Catherine. I loved it! :) And one of these days Astrid and I will definitely fly over and spend at least a week in your fair country. BTW, she LOVED the book of Celtic Designs and is eager to try her hand at them. THANK YOU.

  3. So fun to see your captures knowing that most of the time I was right there with you! This was so much fun meeting you there and yes, having Catherine showing us the real local places was perfect! Can't wait to see more! Enjoy the Brits!

    1. Yes, dear, Robin. To know you were right there with us...and I was there with you...it was heaven. Only better if Astrid had been with us, of course. Anyway, we've just come back from picking up the Brits. And it's been raining cats and dogs! Tomorrow is supposed to be fine, however. Let's see.

  4. Well, the last couple of pictures were missing, but the tour was great. Did you have Leopold Bloom's room? I know the Irish Guinness is different than the stuff with the plastic pill in it that they sell us in the states as "Guiness," but my favorite Irish beer is O'Hara's Irish stout. You must look for it next time.

    Great post. How long will you be (were you) in Ireland?

    1. I doubt very much that I had Leopold Bloom's room, Ted. HA! And are you saying I should NOT try thr Ginness in America?! :) I'll just stict to it in Europe, then. I did see O'Hara signs everywhere but never tried it. Next time!

      It was a very short trip...from Sunday to Tuesday...just long enough to spend some time with Catherine and Robin. When you're this close, it would have been a sin not to join them!

  5. I didn't know that about Guiness turning from light to dark!

    1. I didn't either, Susan. I really got my education! :)

  6. Ah, Temple Bar and all those pubs. It's great also to see the street market away from the tourist center, I'm guessing.

    After ordering Guiness it takes a while to get the glass since they have to let it settle before the second pour. Can't rush a good thing! I do love that photo of you, it tickles me!

    1. It all was within walking distance, Ruth, but probably off the beaten path, yes. That's why having a local with you is so wonderful!

      The Guinness in Ireland probably beats Guinness anywhere else in the world, so we'll just have to go back. :)

  7. not a beer lover but how i'd love to be in dublin and visit all those pubs. how's the grub there?

    lucky you to have a local as a guide/friend.

    1. Part of the "local grub," Maria, was LAMB! Believe it or not, with all the sheep in the Netherlands, you hardly ever see lamb on menus in restaurants, which I really miss. So I had it twice in Dublin. I was in heaven.

      And, yes. It was wonderful to have an Irish guide who knew exactly what was perfect for us to see. I can hardly wait to go back!

  8. I had a good time looking at all your lovely pictures. It was fun for me to look at Luxembourg as I had been there several times, but just the airport, when I used to take Icelandic Airlines to flight to Europe with a stop in Reykjavic then it ended in Luxembourg and a bus would take us to Paris. Once we were snowed in Luxembourg and had to stay in a convent for the night.
    You showed some lovely old churches. We went to Decatur for the book festival and into a church to listen to a poet, I took pictures of the interior and posted them, then I forgot to take pictures of the church outside – but it was not such an old church as yours.
    I enjoyed your last post going from holy churches to a drag queen … that’s Ginnie!

    1. It's good to see you again, Vagabonde. I know you love all these places that we see, since we both love so much of the same thing. I feel so lucky to be on this side of the world to see it all. Thank you.

      And yes, to go from a holy place to a drag queen...well, what can I say! HA!

  9. Ginnie - on my day off today, after cleaning and trying to "get out of" as many chores as possible, I managed not to skip a nap and do some cooking. I also had Rick Steve's on in the background.. Then I started thinking, I've been neglecting my reading and miss reading your weekly updates. I miss all of your photography and cherished those hours of pure photography together. So my mind was wandering while baking and I had to zoom off to read your blog.

    What a treat! I kept thinking about doing some slow photography instead my usual 5 mins I get when with Cam to take photos. Love the pic of you drinking beer and the every day living.

    Hope to read up more.. But I'm missing my time and photography lately.. It's usually seconds that I get these days unfortunately. I keep telling myself, be patient.. It's all in time! :)

    1. Absolutely, Jen, you MUST be patient!!! Remember that I am without children or grandchildren nearby and am very much retired. Your day will come! That you found time to even stop by to read this is totally amazing to me and unexpected. THANK YOU.

  10. ...drown the sorrow of many armies? Ha ha. Oh, I will be back soon to see those clips! Have had busy weeks with school and my little man learning to read. He read his first "Fat Cat" book tonight. :) Just wanted to pop in and say "hello" and I have lots of reading to do here... it is a FEAST for the eyes ... and I could not pass by the "Kilkenny" bar without going in ... I just love the sound of that!

    1. I have a feeling there is more Irish in my blood than anyone has dared tell me, Margaret. I can hardly wait to go back with Astrid one day when we really can explore more!

      And to think of your littlest man READING just grabs my heart strings. Oh-Oh-Oh.

  11. Did you have a grand time in Dublin? :)
    Ha ha... Do you guys have Mrs Brown in Holland?
    Don't you think Mrs Brown looks just like Mrs Doubtfire (minus the mole, of course)?
    But none of them can outdo Dame Edna! Ha ha...
    Must be her cat eye glasses, I guess.

    1. FABULOUS time in Dublin, LC, yes! I want to go back NOW. HA! And, yes, Mrs. Brown totally reminded me of Mrs. Doubtfire, which I actually mentioned to the gals while I was there. But that Dame Edna really is something else, isn't she! :)