Guinness ~ It's Good For You!

Friday morning, the first day of our tour ~ we left the Westbury behind and moved to our new hotel, The Brooks. Since it was only a couple of blocks away, we rolled our suitcases on over. We met Steven, our tour guide, and checked our bags before hoofing it to Starbucks again for breakfast. We weren't due back until 2ish, so from there we headed to the National Museum which had an excellent exhibition on Kingship and Sacrifice. 

The collection was called that because during ancient times human sacrifice was part of the rituals involved in kingship. Part of the exhibition is a replica of a cauldron found in a Danish bog. Originally done in silver this cauldron shows scenes of human sacrifice, a god-like figure holding victims over a cauldron. It also depicts other rituals of kingship and sovereignty and what is believed to be Celtic deities.

The bogs of Ireland have produced perfectly preserved bodies that are centuries old. It was incredible, really, to see a fur cape and leather vest in immaculate shape, raised from a bog where it had been since somewhere between 400 BC and 200 BC. How they cleaned the muck and grime off them without ruining the pieces...well, it has to be quite an art! On top of that, there were burial pots that some archaeologist or historian had pieced together, bit by precious bit. I think we look at these things on display and think, cool, but kind of take it for granted. Look at it harder and think about the person sitting there with a bunch of cracked shards of pottery trying to see the whole and spending hours putting what they have together to make what you're seeing.

They named the bodies after the places they were found. Cashel Man, for instance, was dated to 2000 BC! Scientists could tell you that Gallagh Man (County Galway) generally ate a high protein diet but his last meal was cereal and milk. (This blows my mind that they know what this Iron Age man's last meal was!) Using modern equipment like MRIs and CT scans they could tell you how each person died, and they all were gruesome deaths. They could tell you which were defensive wounds, how the blow to the head was likely to have happened, which stab wounds came first. It was kind of creepy knowing what these people had gone through in their last moments. 

They could tell what kind of status they held by looking at their clothing or accessories. For example, one necklace found in a burial site had lapis and other rare stones that had to be brought from overseas, indicating a person of wealth. Clonycavan Man was discovered in County Meath in February 2003 while workers were cutting peat. His hair appeared to have a gel in it to slick it into a type of mohawk. Ingredients in the gel were traced to France or Spain, so the man must have been of wealth to have acquired such items. Deep axe wounds to the skull indicate he was brutally murdered about 2300 years ago. Oldcroghan Man (found on Croghan Hill, Offaly) was quite tall for his time period (6'6). He had neatly manicured nails and was also murdered. I found it all fascinating.

Walking back to our hotel, we came across a band called Key West playing in a center square.
This is the shot you get when you're short.
Their album, "Joyland," was #1 on the Irish 
charts, but they were playing for free for random people walking along the avenue. We really enjoyed their music, kind of like The Fray or One Republic. 

We checked into our room. 
This pocket was near door to hold your keycard. If you removed the card, all of the lights went out.

When we came down at 2 others were milling about the lobby, too. A man from Charleston noticed Don's Mizzou shirt and came over to talk football. Soon it was time to take our first ride on our tour coach. A local specialist named Adele joined us to point out things of interest around the city. She showed us the beautiful Georgian houses (the ones with the colorful doors that Dublin is famous for.) She pointed out the spot where the Easter Uprising took place, and a building where, when mothers gave birth, they were given a pint of Guinness. Similarly the blood bank would give you a pint of Guinness

Most decorative of the doors.

 for a pint of blood. They didn't lack for volunteers! She pointed out a statue of a goddess of the River Liffey. Dubliners call her "The Floozie in the Jacuzzi." The statue of Molly Malone with her cart selling cockles and mussels is referred to as "The Tart With The Cart."

We ended up at the Guinness factory where we took a tour that ended with a free pint in the Gravity Bar on the top floor whose windows offer a panoramic view of the city and the Wicklow Mountains beyond.

I loved these replicas of  Guinness advertising.

Inside the factory ~ 4 story pint glass

St. James Gate was the western entry to the city in the Middle Ages.

Owners of the original St. James Brewery held water rights .

When Arthur Guinness bought the land, he also got the water rights.

Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease for the property for 45 pounds


Display depicts ingredients of Guinness, starting with water from the Wicklow Mountains.

Safe with recipe



"A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bike." Ad. Shows fish on bike
disputing argument.

Talking clam.

Gravity bar

Dublin and Wicklow Mountains

Like many other tourists, we purchased t-shirts at the shop and a mirror for our bar. 

Back at the hotel we met a couple named Douglas and Barbara at the Welcome Reception. This was our first meal at our 5 star hotels and like the rest we had a menu to choose between three appetizers, three entrees, and three desserts. 

The rest of our group headed to bed but Don and I went back to O'Neal's for some Irish music and dancing. The place was packed so I couldn't get good video, but I'll add a little here so you can hear the audio. There was a male and female step dancer and they held a little dance off, which was fun. You can hear a little video of their tapping, but can't really see anything. Of course, they were incredible. 

So, finding out that Guinness is so good for you that they give it to you as a new mother or a blood donator, we imbibed in a few, plus some of the wonderful ciders, and Bailey's...and we returned to the hotel to get a good night's sleep before leaving Dublin for our next location...


  1. With all those bodies from the bog you could write one heck of a horror story!

    1. Indeed! And if it was one of those quirky films, you could call it "Bog Body Boogie!" I think you're on to something, Susan! ;) Thanks for stopping in!

  2. Haha, okay, I'm glad to learn Guinness is good for you! Wow, fascinating about those preserved bodies. And the man murdered with an ax to the head...freaky, but interesting. Like Susan said, you could write one heck of a horror story. Your hotel was gorgeous. Thanks for sharing the awesome pics and your trip with us. I'm enjoying it so much!

    1. I'm glad, Alicia! Thanks for taking a peek at them! Have a good one!

  3. It's fascinating to think of someone piecing together a person's life from a few bits but it's also fascinating to think of that person, living millennia ago, now being brought into our world for us to marvel at those pieces of his life. So the Irish actually invented the Mohawk? I was aware the Welsh spiked their hair with lime so I guess their Irish brethren also sported that fashion.

    1. I know! I don't know how much of his hair was left, but they knew how long it was in the back and on the is totally fascinating--but I'm not sure I'd want to dig up bodies. Thanks for joining us and adding that information about the Welsh. I didn't know that.

  4. jealous, jealous, jealous LOL! sounds like a fascinating place and I will go there one day. So glad you got to experience it.
    Good luck and God's blessings

    1. Yes, Pam! I can't wait to here your Irish story! So much to see in such a small area! I appreciate you following along! Enjoy the rest of your week!

  5. Thanks for taking us along on your travels. I've been to England and Scotland. Must put Ireland on the bucket list.

    1. I have not been to anywhere but Ireland. I'd really like to see Italy, or take one of those Mediterranean cruises. Hey, let's make it an authors trip! We can get Alicia to organize it! ;) Thanks for joining int, Marissa!

  6. I loved seeing the streets of Dublin again. We didn't take the Guinness tour last year but almost every American we met in Dublin had. I, too, was fascinated at the items we saw in museums that had been retrieved from the bogs.

    1. It makes you realize how relatively new our country is. Glad you came along with me, Linda! Have a great rest of you week and enjoy Halloween!


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