Hillary Holub and the Fall Break Phenomenon

This past week I had Fall Break. As some of you may have read my last post you know that it was a much needed break at the time, but I am now relaxed and refreshed and ready to get back into action. I have been enjoying being abroad so far and this past week was no exception. My roommate Courtney and I went to Dublin, Ireland and London, England. For me it was one of the best trips I have ever been on and I was able to cross some of the things off of my exceedingly long and over the top bucket list.

We started our trip last Sunday with a train ride to Pisa and then an extremely long wait because our flight was delayed. So basically we spent all day hanging out at the airport waiting and waiting and still more waiting, you get the picture it kind of sucked. After we arrived in Dublin we took a bus to our hotel and checked in. The hotel was one of the nicest places I have stayed in Europe and for not very much money either. The Kildare Street Hotel is one I will definitely recommend. Anyway after all of this we made our way over to the restaurant attached to the hotel and had dinner. You can’t go to Ireland and not have some traditional Irish food so wouldn’t you know it I did. After we did that we decided to go out and have a drink. There was a pub we went to that brews almost all of their own beer so we had some of the house special and then called it a night as we were going to be going on a tour of the cliffs of moor the next day.

We woke up at the crack of Dawn, actually scratch that it was still dark outside so no we woke up even before then, and had to meet our bus. Wouldn’t you know it I have the world’s best luck. Our tour ended up getting cancelled due to a protest about water that caused our bus to be delayed. Needless to say neither of us was very happy. While we were still waiting of the bus though Courtney and I met two guys that were supposed to go on the same tour, Brady and Austin. They were both from California and were long time friends. Austin is currently studying abroad in London and I guess Brady decided he needed a vacation. We ended up spending most of the morning looking in to renting a car. While we were trying to get wifi Courtney and I took full advantage of the fact that Ireland has Starbucks and I was finally able to have a Pumpkin Spice Latte. After much walking and a lot of research we found out we were not able to rent a car like we had hoped. Technically to rent a car in Ireland you have to be twenty one, but there most companies won’t do so due to the car insurance rates of our age group.

Instead we decided to take a two and a half hour bus ride to Galway, a small city on the coast, and explored it for the rest of the day. We ate lunch at a local pub and then walked around taking pictures and seeing all of the sights. The city was beautiful and I took a lot of really beautiful pictures. Some of them I took from the inside of their cathedral because it was so pretty I just couldn’t help myself. After that we went to a local pub to listen to some traditional music and have a drink. Too soon it was growing late and we had to catch our bus back to Dublin. The next day Courtney and I went and explored the city of Dublin all day as well as a little souvenir shopping. We finished the day with dinner and a finally drink at the pub to toast Ireland and say goodbye.

We soon found ourselves in London. We had to take a two hour bus ride to get to the station for the fifteen minute walk to our hostel. We met a lot of new people while in London and I can honestly say I have no desire to ever go back to London because honestly it was crowded and noisy and basically a more spread out version of how I picture New York City. Maybe just a little less overwhelming. The day after we got there Courtney and I spent the day doing a hop on hop off bus. It was one of the best decisions we could have made because we were able to see all of the sights and take pictures. The next day though the real fun would begin.

Harry Potter at the Warner Brother Studios was without a doubt my favorite part of London. I went full on nerd and it was glorious. I took so many pictures that my phone ended up dying shortly after our tour ended. We had butter beer which tastes like a root beer float with butterscotch in case you didn’t know. I had such a good time learning about the filming and all of the artistry as well as the amount of work that went into the making of the film. It was truly amazing to see how they brought the film to life even if I am still not convinced Hogwarts isn’t real. I can dream can’t I?! After Harry Potter we went out and walked around the city and did the same thing most of the next day. We did go to Kings Cross Station to take pictures with Platform 9 3/4 and even though it was easily the geekiest thing I have ever done I don’t regret it at all.

We then stopped and had afternoon tea at a local cafe/ restaurant and then went out that night to say good bye to London. We met and Australian guy at our hostel, who goes by Taco, and he ended up going with us. It was definitely a fun night and a great way to say goodbye to such a great place. Our bus left at four thirty in the morning which meant we had to leave our hostel at three thirty in the morning so it was a long day heading back. I am not sure how I survived, but I am alive even though I had zero sleep coming back to Italy. I am now back in Florence and ready to take on the rest of the semester. Don’t worry I still have places to go and things to see so I will keep blogging. For now it’s Cheers! I will see you in Demember.

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