Monday, July 02, 2007

24 Hours in Dublin

We got to Newcastle airport in plenty of time on Saturday morning. George, Henry and I flew on a no-frills airline to Dublin. I'm so glad that we chose to fly from Newcastle instead of Glasgow this weekend. The consequences could have been much worse!

If I use an airport for work related flights, it is almost always Glasgow. I consider it my "home airport". Damage by terrorists at Glasgow airport feels personal. Bastards!

This is a gruesome photo of the terrorist being hosed down before arrest. The man's clothes were all but burned off him. Grim.

On to a lighter note:

We had a whole day to ourselves before Henry and George went off to the concert. We decided to go to The Dublin Zoo. George and I love zoos. I love the birds that can be found at the zoo and took a photo of some of the resident herons and the penguins.

The herons seemed to hang around in two places, by the penguins and by the California sea lions. Perhaps it is because these two groups of animals eat fish and there might be some extra fish going spare.

Each subspecies of small primate has its own little island out in the lake with a bridge to their enclosure where they sleep at night. This little macaque isn't fishing for FISH, he is getting some food. The keepers throw food out onto the island and some didn't make it very far and plopped into the water. This guy didn't mind getting his arm wet.

My favourite creatures to visit are the primates. The zoo takes part in an international breeding programme for endangered primates. One of the most endangered species is the gibbon. The zoo had some wonderful gibbons who delighted us by swinging effortlessly around their little island.

One of the gibbons had a little baby. It was very good at clinging on for dear life as mum dashed about many feet off the ground. We didn't manage to get a good photo of the Siamang gibbons, but they are worth seeing.

The also have just about the cutest baby orangutan available. This little lady will be two in September and was wonderful to watch her being cared for by the group. She was so full of playfulness and confidence.

We also loved looking at the Western Lowland Gorillas. MAN, those are some big apes! They have a HUGE old silverback in there. I was so astounded at his size and strength. There are some holes in the ultra-thick glass that have been caused by this big old boy. We couldn't get a good photo of these guys either as the sun was in our faces.

We walked for miles on Saturday. At the end of the day, Henry and George went off to the Olympia Theater. As I wasn't going to the show, I went off to buy a newspaper, eat some dinner and then wait in a nearby pub for the show to finish.

The boys enjoyed the show. Henry had a good time meeting all his fellow R.E.M. buddies. I finally got to meet Dave Belbin and his charming wife Sue. We tried to find a place where we could all talk and have a beer after the show, but it was difficult as we had a minor child with us. In the end we were allowed into a place called Thunder Road in the Temple Bar area of Dublin. The music was SO LOUD we could barely hear each other speak. (sigh). We've invited Dave and Sue up to visit us in Scotland. I hope they make it up.

It was well after midnight when we made our way back to one of the worst guest houses we've ever stayed in. (another blog entry in itself) We fell asleep almost instantly.

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