When I was contemplating whether or not to become a Flight Attendant, my mother and I had a serious discussion about life and happiness while on holiday in Costa Rica, just months before I was supposed to move to Atlanta for training. My mother, being the supportive and adventurous, incredible woman that she is, told me to “just go for it.”
“Life will pass you by, whether you are living it or not.” -My Amazing Mom
The most persuasive benefit of taking the job in my opinion, was the ability to travel the world with the people I love most. To create these once-in-a-lifetime memories that make the best stories, while truly experiencing life in real-time. While my mother has lived one of the most exciting lives of anyone I know, singing with famous people like Donna Summer and Tina Turner in Las Vegas, becoming one of the most successful female contractors in her industry in the country–she has spent the last couple of decades working constantly to provide for our entire family. Her long hours and deep work ethic has earned her many awards and recognition, but it has also taken her free-time away completely.
She always made sure I traveled out of our small town, so that I’d see there was so much more “world” out there. She has supported me and played the part of both parents for most of my life. She always made sure I was stepping onto the right path and if I veered off course, she was unapologetic in her quest to set me right, which didn’t always go so smoothly because like her, I am extremely strong willed. She was hard when I needed her to be, but always loving. I am who I am because she was my mom through it all. So how could I ever possibly repay her for everything? Taking her around the world is a good start…
So this month I decided to take her somewhere neither of us had ever been: Dublin, Ireland. Since neither of us could take more than a few days off of work, I decided to keep our trip centralized in one place this time, but after experiencing Dublin, we can’t wait to go back and tour the rest of this magical country!
We flew first class from Atlanta, which was an incredible experience neither of us had ever enjoyed until then. Since the seats turned into lay-flat beds, we were able to get a good amount of rest before arriving early Monday morning in Dublin. We were so excited that we dropped our bags off at the hotel in Temple Bar and set out exploring! We ventured first to a wonderful coffee shop next to an adorable shopping center: George’s Street Arcade. After doing some shopping, including beautiful hand-crafted jewelry made from unique crystals at New Moon (located just inside George’s), we headed off for St. Stephen’s Green park to enjoy the glorious sunshine. We spent about an hour there, people watching and bird watching and just enjoying the moment. Just beside the park is a wonderful museum called The Little Museum of Dublin, which I highly recommend! It houses a U2 Room that is really fun to see, and it also covers the history of Dublin in just half an hour. Afterwards, we were starving. Lucky for us, there’s a highly noted cafe under the museum that we enjoyed, Hatch and Sons.
The night life on a Monday night in Temple Bar is more quiet than the rest of the week, when it’s pubs and crowds can be heard for most of the night throughout the little neighborhood. We enjoyed dinner at a famous spot, Boxty (OH EM GEE get the Boxty Tasting Slate and thank me later). Then we walked around the pubs and called it a night as jet lag caught up with us.
The next morning, we made our way through the quiet streets of Temple Bar as the beer delivery men and women were making their rounds. We found our way to the Dublin Castle just as a light rain began. We learned so much more about Dublin’s rich history, beginning with the Vikings. Afterwards, we stopped in an adorable cafe up the street called Queen of Tarts for some afternoon tea and a famous pastry. We set off walking again, making our way to the west of the city to enjoy a real Guinness at the Guinness Storehouse. The tour takes a few hours, as the Storehouse is much larger than we thought! For my fellow marketing professionals, there’s a floor dedicated to the advertising of Guinness which I found really interesting. We enjoyed a pint at the top afterwards, which overlooks all of Dublin.
Our spirits high from Guinness and the thrill of being on a mini-vacation together, we journeyed over to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, another famous landmark in Dublin. When we got there, they told us that we’d missed the last tour, but we could stay for free if we wanted to attend a boy’s choir and Tuesday night service. It was perfect! The choir was beautiful, as was the inside of this cathedral, built in 1192. We enjoyed the sun setting on our walk back over to Temple Bar, seeing the grand finale from the River Liffey. Walking back along the street to our hotel, we finally heard traditional Irish music streaming from an adorable pub just a block from our hotel. We stopped inside and quickly ordered more Guinness and took a seat to enjoy the storytelling from a three-man band that hailed from the Irish countryside. It felt like a movie. I watched my mom laugh and sing along, and I knew this trip would be something we’d talk about years from now, and something we’d never forget.
That night was our last night in Dublin. The next morning we left early to get to the airport, where the kindest airport employees I’ve ever met happily checked us in and let us know we’d be in first class again on the way home! We ate a delicious breakfast while recounting our favorite things about Dublin, and how we planned to rent a car next time and drive along the coast. It was over as quickly as it began, but what a whirlwind of fun, laughter, and adventure it was…
Until next time,