On Monday, Chris and I went with Bus Éireann to Cork. Unfortunately, Carmen could not come with us. The trip took about four and a half hours from Busáras, but it was way cheaper than the train. The bus driver was as so often very grumpy and unfriendly. There seems to be an unwritten law in Ireland that states that you have to be like this if you work in service or public transport. Of course, there are exceptions which prove the rule.
We really experienced the madness of the Irish weather: snow in Dublin, sunshine all the way to Cork and then, the moment we arrived, it started raining cats and dogs. A glance into the Lonely Planet and we were on our way to Sheila’s Hostel, a quite cheap but nice play to stay. We did not plan anything in advance, because we figured that it should be easy to find a place to sleep in January. Well, we were right and it was a good, spontaneous choice. The atmosphere was very international: Dutch, French, Canadian, Kiwis, Aussies, Spanish, Scottish and whatnot. By the way: the woman behind the counter was very friendly. Ha, exception!
We shared a room with some religious Scotsman, who played the accordion and talked about Rudolf Steiner and his Waldorf schools. Chris met a girl and colleague from his Dutch hometown. Some guy gave us a very strange handout after talking quite a lot of incomprehensible stuff. A girl from Spain invited us to have a cup of tea with her. A couple from Limoges started a way to serious conversation with us. To cut a long story short: the usual hostel encounters.
We spent most of the daytime with some sightseeing and rambling through Cork, which is a lovely city. Moreover, we went into some music and book stores and bought some really good movies at a very low price, such as the Coen’s gangster movie Miller’s Crossing for €3,60! Unfortunately one of them, The Zodiac, turned out to be a bad buy as I wanted to buy Fincher’s Zodiac. On Tuesday we saw it in the hostel’s cinema room together with some other guests and were rather disappointed afterwards. Just one tiny little word…
On Monday we went to see Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler in Kino, a small cinema where every second seat was “repaired” with duct tape. However, the movie was brilliant. Maybe one could even call it is a must-see.
During the night we went into some pubs. Noteworthy are “The Thirsty”, because of its cool name, as well as “An Bodhrán”, where an Irishman played folk and pop songs on the guitar. But that man was not the only musician in the room. Besides Phil Lynott, whose photos covered all the walls, there was an even more famous one: Johnny Cash; the man in black. Or at least a Doppelgänger that looked just like him from the side. Elvis did not show up. He probably had already left the building.