Monday, 21 July 2008

INTRODUCTION TO IRELAND (NORTHERN AND SOUTHERN) . . . & GUITAR HERO 101 . . .

Some notable quotes from our four days in Northern Ireland. Firstly the ones which can just about be explained . . .

*"No I don't come with fries." (When I pretended I was so hungry I was going to eat A's arm)
* "The wonderbag of crap".
(M's bag)
*"Stop writhing on the floor - you're not Madonna!"
(Said by M to me - when you see the pics, you'll understand . . .)
* "I don't know you - but I like you."
(Said by a barman in Belfast after my friend M told him we'd spent the entire previous day playing Guitar Hero)
* "You have no hat on - why did you do that?"
(Same barman who was confused when A's friend ordered food then took his hat off so the bar guy couldn't find him)
* "Why don't you have a trampoline in your garden?" "Because I'm not eight."
(I was jealous of A's neighbours having a trampoline)

And the ones I can't explain . . .

*"Strong like russian babies"
* "I can't text in an accent"
* "Alcoholics are quitters."
* "Donkeys tend to swallow my hand."


There's more but I can't remember them. It was my former flatmates' idea to keep track of any interesting (to us) quotes that were said during the holiday. M has the written copy of them though, so that's the ones I remember off the top of my head, or the ones I put on my phone the day M forgot the pen!

Anyway, I had the best four days. I didn't really know what to expect from Northern Ireland really, but I knew once me, A and M were all reunited it was going to be mad and fun. We all used to live together (in the flat I still live in now) and had the best time together, getting drunk, mooning out the window at passersby, pretending to be pirates and making a snowman out of paper (his name was Bitchslap and he was the coolest - I think my landlord might have crushed him though). So I was looking forward to all three of us being in the same country again.

On the journey from Belfast airport to A's house, A told us how her mum had made sure we had everything we needed (her parents were away on holiday to Turkey) - a fully stocked fridge (food AND alcohol), shampoo, towels, shower gel ("In fact, she made sure she got you ANOTHER shower gel just in case you didn't like the other one") so we knew we weren't going to run out of necessities. Things were getting off to a good start . . .

The first full day we were there, we didn't get much exploring done. For one thing, it was pissing it down outside with rain (you can escape Scotland, but you can't escape the weather!) and for another, me and M had discovered Guitar Hero. I didn't expect to like it, but after 20 attempts at Pat Benetar's "Hit Me With Your Best Shot" (I'd got booed off the first nineteen times) I was hooked. Not because I was particularly good at it but because, as I said to the others, "my stage presence was immense." I clearly missed my calling as a guitarist. I became particularly addicted to THIS song by the end of the holiday . . .



We had a brief break from playing Guitar Hero to try out the Wii Fit but it didn't give us very encouraging news so we decided to return to the original game, which we were clearly far more equipped to deal with. After all, drinking alcohol from early on in the day goes better with being a rock star than it does with pretending to become fit and healthy. We ended up playing it on into the early hours of the morning.

On Friday, we ventured out of the house and into Belfast (my friend is from a village about seven miles outside of the city). Our plans to explore sort of turned into a bit of a pub crawl though, so we "explored" a few pubs and eventually ended up in a place with live music. We were expecting some sort of traditional folky stuff so were pleasantly surprised when the male and female on stage treated us to songs by Rihanna and Sam Sparro as well as a few old classics. When they found out they had two Glaswegians in their midst, they decided to make us feel welcome by constantly talking to us between songs, so by the time we left, we were local celebrities, with the natives coming up to our table to say hello and stare at us like we were some sort of exhibit. After that we went on the Belfast Wheel (which for some reason, I decided to nickname "The Wheel of Doom") and got to look at the city from above. That was kinda cool, part of me thinks that every city should have one. After a run for the bus (which we missed), we ended up getting a taxi back to the village and heading back to the Wii, via the local pub. We didn't stay in there long though - we had been under the impression that there was going to be karaoke, but this seemed to be a fallacy. Oh well . . . Guitar Hero filled the hole . . .

Saturday was Dublin day. It took us two hours forty minutes to get there by bus so it was a bit of an early start. But we were glad to see the weather was far nicer down there than it had been up North. After a whirlwind tour of some of the sights, a trip to a store filled with Irish "tat" (M and A both bought t-shirts with funny slogan's on it - A's said "Who's Your Paddy?"), and some traditional Irish food (well, we actually went to TGI's!) we headed off on the lookout for a pub in Temple Bar. I make that sound like a challenge . . . for those who have BEEN to Dublin (and possibly those that haven't!) you'll probably know that Temple Bar is FULL of pubs. We settled on one called The Vat Bar, where we proceeded to drink ourselves silly and then eat more food. I believe we were also taking random pictures of us dancing around the pillar which was next to our table, but I can't confirm or deny that until I see the photos. (Unfortunately the camera I ordered didn't arrive on time so I'm forced to rely on other people for pictures once again). We just managed to make the last viable bus back and I promptly passed out on the seat.

Yesterday we stayed in the village since we were going to have to head back to the airport at half six-ish. We went for a wander about, saw the village donkey (who nearly had a major "hee-haw" attack when he saw us) and ended up in the kid's swing park on the roundabout. My god, I have not been on a roundabout in years - I nearly fell off it! (And this was me sober!) After that we went on the climbing frame. I was sorely tempted to go on the slide to but refrained because 1) I was worried my ass would get stuck halfway down and 2) there were some eight year old boys in the park already giving us some strange looks. Later we had a barbeque in the garden - I've actually never had a barbeque before, believe it or not! - and finished off with some more Guitar Hero (of course!) before heading for the airport (oh and by the way Easyjet, I'm STILL not impressed with your service. The flight itself always seems to be okay, but it's the run up to it that always really pees me off. More on that another time.)

It's sad to be back, but I had such a great time; it totally surpassed my expectations, and I have a lot of great memories from my time over there. We're definitely planning to go back there in the near future, and it's made me even more excited for my upcoming Southern Ireland trips later on in the year. I've also got a long weekend in Barcelona to look forward to, so I'm a busy little bee at the moment . . . :)

4 comments:

  1. Sounds fabulous. I would love to go to Ireland! Rock Band is truly addictive - I never thought I would like it but I got hooked.

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  2. Aw, FUN!

    I love to write down funny quotes that my friends and I say when we're together. They're always so funny afterward! My friend Victoria is the queen of funny ones (ie "The solvent to my problem is....")!

    And Madonna? She DOES writhe on the floor. WAAAY too old to be doing that!

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  3. I just tried Rock Band for the first time this weekend... and, yes, I was booed off the stage a few times due to some weak guitar playing.

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  4. I did the same thing on my scots trip. A must for remembering the good times. One of the goodies was "you should know, you have haggis breath" so funny. I will admit , love the ones you provided. Xoxo
    Ps rock band rocks.

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