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Day 310: Fusiliers’ Arch

Mention to just about anyone in Dublin “the arch entrance of St Stephen’s Green” and they’ll know just what you’re talking about. However, if you ask for the name of the arch itself, that may be trickier to come by. Even I didn’t know it for a very long time, and learned about it after a friend came visiting. The things we do to impress our friends ;)

Modelled after the Arch of Titus in Rome, it commemorates the 212 soldiers of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers who were killed fighting for the British in the Boer War (1899–1902). For that reason, the arch was also previously called the Traitors’ Gate by strong nationalists, who believe that Irish should not be fighting a British war but to demand for independent Irish states. Today, history largely forgotten by many, it serves as one of the main meeting points of the city, quite likely before a walk down Grafton Street for a shopping spree.

Day 182: Traditional ice cream

It’s officially summer I guess, even in Dublin. Sure the sky is grey-ish but it’s set to improve over the weekend. Have I brought the lovely sunny Parisian sun back with me? Maybe. Not that I am complaining. It’s always nice to bask in the warmth of the sun. (Sure sign I’ve been living in Europe for too long.)

Perhaps it’s just not quite warm enough to have some ice cream. Trade was slow for this vendor that in the few minutes that I was standing here (waiting for someone) he had always been on the phone, chatting away. Then again, it could well be because he was on the phone so much that people were not approaching him?

Day 21: The guy that plays with fire

The streets of Dublin are not only populated by musicians, but also of street performers and mime artists. Certainly, no one can say there’s a lack of entertainers in the city. Come weekend, there can easily be an act every 50-60m down Grafton Street.

For some reason, the junction where Grafton Street meets St Stephen’s Green often has fire-related action going on. Usually, this is the spot of a couple of guys dancing to Jamaican tunes and doing fire limbo in some funny leopard prints – one of them would even limbo as low as the height of a beer bottle. Today though, it’s a jongleur that plays with fire. He’s not bad in getting the crowd going, but I didn’t have time to assess the show in entirety since I was heading to an appointment.

Day 6: Bickering

The big freeze is set to return to Ireland, with snow forecasted for the weekend. Daily temperature for the last few days have been dropping bit by bit but not enough to prevent me to go out for a walk and meet up with my friends.

The lake at St Stephen’s Green Park is today semi-frozen. On one of the frozen icy patches, a pair of mallards decided to bicker for some 10 minutes (I have no idea why I stood there and watched the going-ons for that long) before being distracted. Nearby, a little girl began tossing bread morsels into the water, effectively becoming the favourite visitor of the park among the mallards. ;)

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