I set out tonight in search of social Dublin and – while I am drenched to the bone – there can be no denying that I found it. Through the drizzle, I made my way to Trinity College. There, I introduced myself to one person and began to spread virally as “Milan from Canada.” Every twenty minutes or so, it seemed that whoever I had been speaking to would introduce me to someone else. Between that and speaking with people beside me who were part of the same group as the person to whom I was introduced, I was very rapidly integrated.
Once the student bar at Trinity closed, I followed a group of Spanish drummers and pipers whose jaunty tune was quite at odds with the downpour. While doing so, I met a quartet of Dubliners who seem to overflow with goodwill towards Canada (actually, the sentiment was quite omnipresent among those with whom I spoke). After teaching one young woman the French version of the anthem, I ended up with them and still further friends at a place called Doyle’s. I wasn’t quite up to the 2:30am closing time there, so I tried to take advantage of a gap in the rain to get back to my hostel. Thirty metres away, a cab managed to hit a puddle in such a way that I got drenched from head to toe in pure Hollywood fashion.
Despite such minor foibles, it has been an excellent few hours. My ability to pick a person’s words from loud background noise has always been far below average, so chances are I didn’t hear anyone’s name properly. Even so, I direct my sincerest thanks outwards to all those anonymous Dubliners (and Spaniards) who made this rainy night so social and interesting.