I loved Dublin when I first visited the city in 1998. To my superstitious soul, it felt as though there were intense writer vibes emanating from every spooky, stone-laden corner. And the people! Such warm, celebratory sorts--even on weekdays, even when it's foggy and cold in the middle of June.
Reading this, I realize it's high time I grabbed some friends and visited Dublin again, perhaps even on the next St. Patrick's Day (my bolds):
Lithuanian musicians, drum-beating Punjabis and West African dancers used Dublin's St. Patrick's Day parade on Saturday to celebrate their place in a booming Ireland that has become a land of immigrants.
One man dressed as St. Patrick in papal hat and sunglasses did the samba, while another float nearby featured "Miss Panty," Dublin's premier drag queen.
Dublin's freewheeling parade drew a half-million spectators and included Christine Quinn, the first openly gay leader of the New York City Council. Quinn is boycotting the more conservative New York parade because the organizers refuse to let gay and lesbian groups march.
This year, she accepted an Irish government invitation to be part of the Dublin City Council contingent.
"The fact I'm here in Dublin and able to march and participate in inclusive events should send a message of how backwards the New York parade is," said Quinn.
The Irish economy has been booming for the past 13 years, drawing immigrants from around the world to the country - and its festivities.
In addition to its diversity and progressive attitude, which certainly give it a sizeable advantage over certain other world capitals (ahem), Dublin's got literary history to spare; fantastically interesting people (every cab driver is a gifted storyteller); delicious cuisine of every nationality--and of course the pub food, with jacket potatoes and chips that make one remember what spuds are supposed to taste like; and oh yes, Guinness and whiskey and bookshops--oh my!
Also at Shakes' place.