Saturday, September 3, 2011

-- Three-day holiday --

Long nights working at the hostel while I was learning all the happenings of night shifts and trying to get my body used to be awake at that odd time of the day, I remembered a lot about the long nights flying over Asia or Europe and the feeling of tiredness at a level where no cup of coffee would make any effect on you any more and something to lean onto (on the plane would be the toilet) would be just priceless.

So, after ten shifts in a row (including my induction/training) my body and mind were craving for some rest. Luckily I had booked some cheap flights to the West of Ireland some weeks ago and had enough days off to actually make it to them and some more.

After my last shift which thank God was quite uneventful and very easy, I went straight back home to have a quick shower, packed my backpack and ran to catch the bus to the airport for my first ever Ryanair flight! Because you can't live in Europe and never fly them.

I almost didn't make it to the closing time but after running a bit through both terminals, got through all the checks and was the last passenger to board that Boeing 737 which had only about 30 passengers in total.

We took off on-time and the flight was very quick. I remembered about my dreadful intra-Gulf double sectors and I imagined how hard it can be for this airline's crew members as they have to sell so many things and perform so many tasks in just about a 30 minutes flight, no wonder why you almost never see them smiling, not to mention the very nice (and tacky) detail once your flight touches down at any airstrip on time when a victory horn is played and a weird automated voice with a strong scottish accent points out that you got there on-time.

Kerry airport was absolutely tiny but kind of cozy really, had to wait about an hour for a bus to Killarney and then checked into the same hostel I went to last year, amazingly the staff recognized me and welcomed me back.

Day was overcast so just went for a quick walk to the beautiful Ross Castle in the middle of the lakes, took some quick snaps of the beautiful scenery overlooking the mountains and finished it with a dose of fat burgers and chips before heading back to the hostel and collapse on my bed at a time as early as 8:00pm, in the end, it had been about 30 hours without any sleep at all.

Day one had been hectic but I knew the second one wouldn't be any quieter as I decided to visit my friend Zanet in the stunning Dingle peninsula. In order to make it there, had to catch the early morning bus to Dingle via Tralee which took me fairly three hours.
Time was short and was due to leave the next morning ,so I met my friend and we went to a true old-fashioned tea house to have some exotic mumbo-jumbo teas with flowers, fruits, etc. and a nice piece of blueberry and white chocolate cake.

She lend me her bike again so while she went for her diving lesson, I faced the 21 kilometres scenic road that separate Dingle from one of my favourite spots on Earth, Dunquin Beach. Second time here and never disappointed, the beach looked as beautiful as ever with turquoise powerful waves breaking on white sand surrounded by Emerald green cliffs and a clear view of the Blasket Islands.
I couldn't go to the beach without getting into the freezing water which by this time helped me recover from the long and sweaty cycle and then it was just time to chill by the beach while kids were playing around the water like it was the Caribbean and others playing with hurls and beach balls, a perfectly believable scene of a tropical country if you don't take into consideration that it was actually 15 degrees Celsius and the North Atlantic ocean was freezing cold.

Then it was time to face the cycle back to Dingle which is always easier as everything is a bit downhill and then straight to my friend's house to play with the newly born kittens and some nice talks around a cup of green tea until my eyes were practically shutting as my friend was addressing to me (I really hope she never thinks I was being rude).

Seven in the morning again and I was waiting for the bus back to Tralee which filled up quickly with students going to school carrying heavy backpacks and looking Irish at their utmost.
Stop was short and then had to take another bus to the airport where I waited for about an hour and a half to board my flight to Dublin which this time had only about 12 passengers.
Then again, Ryanair's cabin crew performed yet another smiley and friendly flight (read sarcasm there, even though then again , I can't blame them) with paninis, scratch cards sale and the victory horn when landing again.

Holiday was not over there, so I met my friend Ivana for a quick lunch in town and two hours later I was on the train to Sligo where I got three hours later to connect to the quiet village of Strandhill where I was gonna have a meeting with the people running a local hostel.

It was very cold but Strandhill is probably one of the best spots I know to watch a sunset and this time was not the exception. My pictures looked like amazing phothoshoped postcards (and I took them with an iPhone) and as the day finished, I went back to the hostel to have some rest.
The next morning the day was beautiful but cold and the sea was completely flat, which meant NO SURFING!. Quite disappointed really, just had a very productive meeting where I discussed ways of bringing people to this lovely village and then back to the bus and then train to Dublin.

No, it wasn't over there as I had received an e-mail saying my roster had changed and what was supposed to be a night off became yet another shift. Can't complaint though, money is all I want right now after the bitter Experience Media fiasco.

So here I am right now at the hostel, I managed to stay awake for 26 hours before I got some sleep yesterday and then had a quiet day of late-late breakfast, walk into town and a quick nap before coming back to the hostel.
This shift is almost over and I've decided to update the blog, maybe due to a huge cup of coffee and a glass of Coca-Cola.

Next weeks are supposed to be very intense but hopefully very productive with interesting developments in all levels. Talk to you later folks.