May 3, 2023
Today we visited the Republic of Ireland (aka Ireland), which is a different country than Northern Ireland, and is not part of the United Kingdom. Ireland was declared a Republic in 1949, joined the United Nations in 1955, and joined the European Communities in 1973. (The EC later became the European Union.) Their currency is the Euro, not the English Pound.
During the Great Potato Famine (1845-1849), the population of over 8 million dropped by 30%. One million Irish died of starvation and disease and another 1.5 million emigrated, mostly to the U.S. Despite this tragedy, Ireland has persevered and developed an advanced economy, and its capital, Dublin, is one of Europe's major financial hubs. Today, more than 50% of the population is under the age of 25. Ireland has become one of the largest foreign locations for US technology multinationals such as Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook. Truly an inspirational story.
We began our trip to Dublin via Dun Laoghaire, a port city and suburb of Dublin.
Dublin is a UNESCO City of Literature, not only because of all the literary greats who were born there or wrote there, but also because of the Irish people's love of literature. There were book stores everywhere. Also, Trinity College is known for its amazing and beautiful library, and collection of ancient and rare books. Trinity College was established in 1592 and writers such as Oscar Wilde, Samuel Beckett, Bram Stoker, Jonathan Swift, and Anne Enright studied there.
We also saw Saint Patrick's Cathedral, the Irish President's home (which looks a lot like the White House), Phoenix Garden (twice the size of Central Park), and more.
And of course there was Irish beer and Irish Coffee!!
Irish craft beer Irish Coffee The Oldest Pub in Dublin