We hopped on the plane around 6pm EST and flew into the morning. The flight was 7 hours and there is a five hour time difference between Dublin and New York. When we got off the plane, it was roughly 7am local.
By the time we claimed our baggage (yay, none of it was lost), I got the first stamp in my passport (very, While You Were Sleeping), and we picked up our rental car, taking a brief breather in Dublin before the 3+ hours drive to Donegal seemed like a great idea.
We ended up parked near Trinity College. With no phone data and a new currency in hand, I set about figuring out what my euros could buy me, like a bottled smoothie (3.45 euros) from a place called Cafe Sol so I could get the coins to feed our parking meter (don’t even ask). Thank you to the gentleman behind the counter for a) not cheating me and b) giving me a tutorial. (Seriously, using euro coins is a challenge for someone from a place where the $1 coin is looked at with wonder…and as a nuisance. Sorry Sacajawea.)
My father and I took in a little of Trinity College and then I decided I need to take in some food. ‘Chasing wifi,’ as my friend Molly put it, became one of the running jokes of the trip, so I couldn’t check Happy Cow. [Yep, I had to buy a whole new phone that would work in Ireland (despite having bought my last phone because it was "global ready") just to be able to pay extra so I could text/call (even though you then have to pay an increased rate to text/call), so no I was not about to pay extra for data...but I always will in the future.] However, as I walked by Mama’s Revenge (what a name), a quick glance and I spotted the world vegetarian so I inquired.
My initial interaction wasn’t awesome. As I asked the woman about the ingredients, listing what I didn’t want (milk, eggs, animals), she confirmed what didn’t have those products but then followed up by asking if there was anything else I was afraid of. I have strong convictions; I am vegan for ethical reasons, but I pulled the allergy card (come on, cruelty allergy, it’s a real thing). Ultimately, I was able to get a burrito stuffed (like seriously, could barely roll it up, STUFFED) full of beans (cooked in olive oil; no lard), rice (no chicken stock), guacamole, salsa and peppers…and it was awesome.
So one point to Dublin! With that, I rolled back into the car like a happy little panda and we were off to catch up with friends in Donegal!