Thursday, November 30, 2017


I'm not endorsing any of these dockless bike companies, you understand. I just think it's interesting how their bikes are showing up now on our streets and in places I wouldn't necessarily expect, like here at this dead-end street in Georgetown. I'm fascinated, too, by the business models behind them and the technology.

Like Mobike, Ofo is a Beijing-based company. According to Wikipedia:

"Customers use the company's mobile app on their phones to locate nearby bicycles. Each bike has a code on the frame, which the customer scans to unlock the bike. They use the bike and when they are finished, they leave it on a public bike rack and lock it."

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Dockless Bikes

Well, I hate to tell you this, but we're back here in the crazy ol' US of A. And where better to begin catching up than with these pics of planes landing and taking off at National Airport in front of a Mobike. The latter is just one of several so-called dockless bicycle companies testing the DMV market (that's local lingo for D.C., Maryland, and Virginia) where bicycle ridership is actually increasing. Prospects for the company are good, but as I'll try to show over the next couple of days, the competition is stiff.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Last Night

Spent my last night in Ireland at a pub for an evening of good food, drink, music, and dancing. Perhaps this is how all good trips should end.

Friday, November 24, 2017


I was pleasantly surprised by the classical guitar and classical music. This is Grafton Street, after all, so you expect to see street musicians, even fiddlers as in yesterday's post, but maybe not classical artists. This fellow seemed to be the exception.

Thursday, November 23, 2017


"Buskers, including musicians, poets and mime artists commonly perform to the shopping crowds on Grafton Street. This was portrayed in the opening scene of the 2006 film Once, starring Glen Hansard of The Frames, a former Grafton Street busker" (Wikipedia).

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

The Táin Wall

"Desmond Kinney’s 1974 mosaic mural off Nassau Street in Dublin also goes by the name of the Táin Wall.

It is possible that the majority of Dubliners are unaware of this mural and at the site there is nothing to indicate what it is or even the identity of the artist" (

"'The driving-off of cows of Cooley', more usually rendered The Cattle Raid of Cooley or The Táin) is a legendary tale from early Irish literature, often considered an epic, although it is written primarily in prose rather than verse. It tells of a war against Ulster by the Connacht queen Medb and her husband Ailill, who intend to steal the stud bull Donn Cuailnge, opposed only by the teenage Ulster hero Cúchulainn. Traditionally set in the 1st century AD in an essentially pre-Christian heroic age, the Táin is the central text of a group of tales known as the Ulster Cycle. It survives in two main written versions or 'recensions' in 12th century manuscripts, the first a compilation largely written in Old Irish, the second a more consistent work in Middle Irish."

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Spire of Dublin

The Spire of Dublin (aka Monument of Light) was erected beginning in 2002 as part of a city improvement project.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Rev'd Magill

Had a plate of Beef & Guinness Stew served with shallots, baby mushrooms, root vegetables, and baby potatoes all enjoyed with a 5 Lamps Dublin Lager recommended by the waitress (below). The highly esteemed Reverend John Magill was my table guest. Or maybe I was his guest? :-)

Sunday, November 19, 2017

The Church

From St. Patrick's to The Church Bar & Restaurant for lunch. Yep, that's right, Old St. Mary's, the Anglican church where John Wesley preached and Jonathan Swift worshipped, is now a popular restaurant.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Swift & Wesley

Jonathan Swift and John Wesley are among the notables who have passed through St. Patrick's. Swift,  probably best known as the author of Gulliver's Travels once was dean of the cathedral and is interred there (above). The chalice Swift used to serve Holy Communion (below and left) now sits next to the replicas of the flagon and chalice used by John Wesley, the originals having been stolen. 

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Manchester Arena

I arrived at St. Patrick's Cathedral two days after the Manchester Arena bombing on May 22. In memory of those who died, this member of the cathedral's staff climbed into the pulpit to invite those present to join her in prayer on behalf of the victims and their families. Many also lit candles.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

St. Patrick's Cathedral

"Saint Patrick's Cathedral (Irish: Ard-Eaglais Naomh Pádraig) in Dublin, Ireland, founded in 1191, is the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland. With its 43-metre (141 ft) spire, St. Patrick's is the tallest church in Ireland and the largest. Christ Church Cathedral, also a Church of Ireland cathedral in Dublin, is designated as the local Cathedral of the diocese of Dublin and Glendalough" (Wikipedia).

Monday, November 13, 2017

Political Lying

Arts & Humanities Research Institute
Trinity College
Dublin, Ireland

“Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it, so that when men come to be undeceived, it is too late; the jest is over, and the tale hath had its effect: like a man, who hath thought of a good repartee when the discourse is changed, or the company parted; or like a physician, who hath found out an infallible medicine, after the patient is dead." ~ from Political Lying by Jonathan Swift

Sunday, November 12, 2017

O'Connell Street

Upper O'Connell Street
Dublin, Ireland

Really, except for the accents, this could have been D. C. Heck! Even with their accents this could have been D.C., considering how many people in D.C. hail from the Emerald Isle.

The street "was widened, and renamed 'Sackville Street' (named after Lionel Sackville, 1st Duke of Dorset) in the late 1700s until 1924, when it was renamed in honour of Daniel O'Connell, a nationalist leader of the early 19th century, whose statue stands at the lower end of the street, facing O'Connell Bridge" (Wikipedia).

Saturday, November 11, 2017


"Hore Abbey (also Hoare Abbey, sometimes known as St.Mary's) is a ruined Cistercian monastery near the Rock of Cashel, County Tipperary, Republic of Ireland.

'Hore' is thought to derive from 'iubhair' – yew tree. The former Benedictine abbey at Hore was given to the Cistercians by Archbishop David MacCearbhaill (in 1270), who later entered the monastery. He endowed the Abbey generously with land, mills and other benefices previously belonging to the town. A story that is much cited by tour-guides is that he evicted the Benedictines after a dream that they were about to kill him. This is unlikely to be true and probably arises from the Archbishop's 'interference' with the commerce of the city of Cashel. His disfavour of the established orders in Cashel certainly caused local resentment. He was resented by some of the towns-people, being considered too much in favour of the Irish by the more Anglicised. This is evident in the objection by the thirty-eight local brewers to the levy of two flagons out of every brewing and in the murder of two monks who were visiting the town" (Wikipedia).

Friday, November 10, 2017

Hall of the Vicars Choral

"The Hall of the Vicars Choral was built in the fifteenth century. The vicars choral were laymen (sometimes minor canons) appointed to assist in chanting the cathedral services. At Cashel there were originally eight vicars choral with their own seal. This was later reduced to five honorary vicars choral who appointed singing-men as their deputies, a practice which continued until 1836. The restoration of the Hall was undertaken by the Office of Public Works as a project in connection with the European Architectural Heritage Year, 1975. It is now the building through which visitors enter the site" (

Monday, November 6, 2017

Rock of Cashel

"According to local mythology, the Rock of Cashel originated in the Devil's Bit, a mountain 20 miles (30 km) north of Cashel when St. Patrick banished Satan from a cave, resulting in the Rock's landing in Cashel. Cashel is reputed to be the site of the conversion of the King of Munster by St. Patrick in the 5th century" (Wikipedia).

"The Rock of Cashel was the traditional seat of the kings of Munster for several hundred years prior to the Norman invasion. In 1101, the King of Munster, Muirchertach Ua Briain, donated his fortress on the Rock to the Church. The picturesque complex has a character of its own and is one of the most remarkable collections of Celtic art and medieval architecture to be found anywhere in Europe. Few remnants of the early structures survive; the majority of buildings on the current site date from the 12th and 13th centuries" (Wikipedia).

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Garden of Remembrance

You may not be able to read the inscription on the stone above. If not, then it's about a native of Kinsale, Kathleen Murphy, who created a garden on a prominent hill in County Cork dedicated to the firefighters who lost their lives in New York City on September 11, 2011. As an American visiting Ireland, I was quite moved to see some of my fellow Americans memorialized in this way.