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Dubin, Philippa's 'Official' report

Dramatis Personae: Andi, Jeanette, Sylvia, Stephania, Dawn, Self, Sean the Sheep and Connor the cow. Oh, and Max, but he's special :))

Six ladies and one guy. I didn't hear any complaints about the ratio!

After brekkie on Saturday, we marched with fair purpose to get the open-top Dublin bus tour from one of the central squares. Actually, it was a wide road with a huge pedestrianised pavement seperating the two carriage-ways and dominated by a highly phallic and tall, tapering silver pole/statue. Hmmm... I don't know what the man was doing edging around the girth near the base, but it looked distinctly dodgy...

The bus tour was a little drafty but highly informative and gave a good overview of all the attractions on offer. We made our way back to Jameson's for the whiskey tour. This was informative and somewhat alcoholic, especially for one member of our party (Sylvia) who volunteered to take the taste test. Five or six different whiskies! As a single malt devotee (you can thank my Scottish ancestry for that) I was impressed by the smoothness of Jamesons. The creme de la creme of blends that I've encountered to date. I bought a couple of postcards of one Jameson's brand called 'Black Bush'. I'm not saying a word...

Max, Steph and Sylvia went on alone to go to an art gallery and the rest of us traipsed up to the Guinness factory for their tour, more free samples, themed shopping and RUGGER! The tour was bad, frankly - dark, badly lit and difficult to follow. Jeanette and I gave up and headed upwards for the black nectar at the top. Now the panoramic view of Dublin and the free pint of foaming peavo was definiely a highlight - that and England winning the game later!

In the evening we found Chinese food after some meandering and then live folk music (guitar, pipes and fiddle) in a pub not far away. More Guinness (just to make sure of the quality, you understand) and I had a fascinating talk with Max about music, singing and Lieder in particular. Then I got leaned on by a very drunk young Irishman who was lucky to be vertical, given the fumes coming off him.

On Sunday morning we did some more meandering and found a multi- storey coffee shop before bidding Max farewell. Jeanette and I had a look at Lansdowne Road (we couldn't really get close enough due to the houses and high walls), then spent a happy hour poring over the exquisite Book of Kells before dumping some fliers at Forbidden Planet and heading back for supper. Afterwards we found another pub and had Irish coffee whilst playing with my new Archer dolly (Enterprise) and getting him into some interesting positions (not pornographic!). Jeanette and I headed back after this as I had a fairly prompt start for my flight the next morning, whilst the rest went off on the ghost tour.

A good weekend - lots of Guinness, rugby, good company and especially Max. Couldn't really ask for much more!

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