Sunday, December 28, 2014

It's in the the colorful details

 Although exploring beautiful scenery and historic sites is wonderful, sometimes the best part of traveling is simply learning how other people live. I'm always enthralled by the quirky details of foreign cities, like this life-size dog in a shop window in Dublin who can apparently walk through walls. His front and back ends are in two different windows of a display selling housewares. I'm not really sure what the point is!
And there is food, a lot like ours, but with some odd little differences. French fries become chips, and are served with vinegar instead of catsup (my daughter used both).  
 My daughter and I often bought ready-to-eat food for our supper and even buying groceries was an interesting experience. We always spent time going around and looking at all the weird foods you never seen in an American supermarket:  blood pudding, a kind of "salad" that is really flavored, finely-minced cabbage, and all sorts of baked goods and sweets with unique names. And who knew that pancakes were American!

And you always discover things you love and then find out you can't get at home: like raspberry-favored cider and the perfect handcream.
In addition to traditional sightseeing, my daughter and I both love just walking around and looking at things, marveling at sites you'd never find in this country. From the old... This is a department store in Edinburgh:

To the new... a hotel in the Temple Bar district of Dublin.
 And then there is street art...
 And ordinary things transformed... like this lobby in a Dublin hotel that is totally purple!
  And pubs and restaurants with an exotic feel.
Cities are also where you see scenes that remind you of the cruel disparities of life:  a homeless man sleeping on a piece of cardboard on the sidewalk of a massive bank building, a pregnant woman with despair in her eyes begging for change in an area of posh shops and elegant restaurants. These images are a reminder that for all our progress in some ways, humans have a long way to go.

Most trips end too soon, about the time I finally stop getting lost constantly, and also about the time I figure out what I really want to see and do. Oh, well. Now I'll know for next time!


  1. Hello Mary.
    Nice to hear from you again :) Love your pictures + comments!
    Annie (aka Kelly Ann Scott)

    1. Thanks, Annie. I enjoy sharing my pictures and experiences, but it takes so much time. Got to get back to writing fiction soon!