Going full nerd, I walked down the street to visit the James Joyce Centre–how was I supposed to pass it up when it was practically right next to our hostel? As I relived my ENGL 381 final, I also flashbacked to the good old weeks when we read and discussed A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man spring semester of senior year.
Following a professor’s recommendation, I then hopped aboard the DART to Howth, a little coastal village where I may or may not have taken way too many pictures. (Un?)Wisely, I followed the longest hiking path, Bog of the Frogs, along the peninsula. But those 12 km/7.5 miles along the coast and through the mountains were absolutely worth it: the scenery was strikingly beautiful, and practically every five minutes, it changed and became even more stunning.
Though my photos will never do the blues or greens of the water justice, at times it felt like I was walking through a fairy tale–I kid you not, at one point, I even crossed a babbling brook and walked past a wall embedded with purple seashells.
The Internet claims the hike should have taken three hours, but I was so distracted by absorbing the view and attempting to capture it on camera that I took five hours to complete it. Okay, the fact that I stole unhealthy amounts of sea glass from the beach probably didn’t help. (Look, they were so easy to find and I couldn’t resist the different colors. I’m basically a kid attracted to shiny things.)
It began to rain as I cut through the mountainside, and I grumbled at the humidity until, at long last, I came full circle and reached the train station. Once tired, sweaty, and starving, and now clean and fed and ready to curl up in bed for our 6am flight, I write this apologetic note to France: sorry, I promise I still love you, but Howth has officially stolen my heart.