For just over a week in February, I was lucky to have some family members make the journey from the Midwest to Ireland. My mom and two of my older siblings arrived on a typical cloudy and rain stricken day in Dublin. Even though it rained a bit while they were here, they were grateful to be somewhere that had temperatures over thirty degrees! It was nice to show them around this amazing city that I have become so attached to. We visited various places throughout the city such as Dublin Castle, Guinness Storehouse, Book of Kells/The Old Library, among other various things. We also enjoyed a trip to the seaside village Howth and a day trip to Wicklow. I had to attend classes the week they were in town, so while I was busy with lectures, they ventured off on their own and even took a day trip to Northern Ireland to visit Belfast and Giant’s Causeway which they very much enjoyed.
When we went to the storehouse one night, we were fond of the self-guided tour through the brewery to learn more about the Guinness family and what the process was for producing such an iconic and popular drink? One thing about Arthur Guinness family when they were first starting up their business back in the eighteenth century and that continues on is their respect and what they provide for their workers. The workers at the Guinness factory were provided with good working conditions and quality health support for themselves and their families. Arthur wasn’t only charitable to his workers, but also to the rest of Dublin. He contributed a great sum of money to help with the restoration of St. Patrick’s Cathedral when it was not in good shape.
On a saturday, we all set out early one morning for a day trip to Wicklow with one of the touring companies in town. The tour included a visit to Glendalough Monastic city, the Wicklow mountains, and Kilkenny where we visited the Kilkenny castle and strolled through the cities charming streets.
All in all, it was great to have some of the family visit me and I hoped they enjoyed the craic here in Ireland!
By Emma Stolen