Europe

Dublin Part I

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Posted on / by Alex Berger

Packing always seems like a monumental task. The lighter you try and pack, the greater the fear of overlooking something major. As I prepared to leave, I set to the task of packing Friday evening. With a 12:15PM departure time, I knew I had a small emergency buffer if I overlooked something, but that things would no doubt be rushed.

As I set to laying everything out in the living room, it quickly turned into what looked like a war zone. Bags scattered around, clothing piled up, random electronics covering the floor.

By 11:00PM it was time to record a few quick videos. As I laid everything out, I couldn’t help but feel as though something was missing. Something important…and then it dawned on me. I’d forgotten to pick up a replacement day pack. Slightly panicked, I realized much to my relief that the Super Walmart down the street was open 24 hours. Dad in tow we struck out at 11:30 in search of a suitable daypack.

20 Minutes later I had an Outdoor Products daypack in hand for $15. The outdoor products bags have been fantastic. I use their $30 backpack as my main travel bag, and so far the $15 daypack is great. Durable, well designed and amazingly priced.

On the way back to the house, Dad and I realized that we’d left my Capital One credit card in the car with Mom, who was off celebrating one of her girlfriends birthdays down the road. Slightly stressed, we tried calling several times, only to find that her phone was off.

By the time we got back to the house and finished packing, the total weight of both of my bags came to 25 pounds. I’d missed the 15 pound mark I was aiming for. I was slightly dissappointed with myself but still well under the 20kilo ceiling I’d set for myself. I had plenty of extra room. My daypack weighed just under 10 pounds, while my main pack weighed about 15 pounds.

Videos recorded, bags packed, I turned in. I had a big day full of extended travel ahead of me.

The following morning we rose early, got hold of Mom, and had a quick breakfast after picking up the all important credit card. We ate, conversed, enjoyed each other’s company and then set off to the airport.

I arrived, made it through security without issue, and before long found myself on a flight bound for Atlanta. The first leg was tight, packed in next to a very strange 6’9″ gentleman with a 6’3″ Israeli in between us…it was a long, sandwiched flight.

My layover in Atlanta went by quickly and luckily the gate associate was able to change my seat from 43G to 15B – giving me a bulkhead seat at the front of the aircraft. Relieved that I wouldn’t be sandwiched for the flight to Ireland I settled in and waited.

The flight itself was good. Only 7 hours due to the jetstream, I wasn’t able to sleep, but did manage to watch a movie on my netbook, in between chats with the woman I ended up sitting next to. Originally from Ireland, she was on her way back to visit family with her two children and husband, after moving to the US 7 years previous. The netbook was a lifesaver and a fun social tool. At various points I shared a video with her and another Chilean gentleman while waiting in Phoenix.

I arrived in Dublin at 10:30AM after a long sleepless night, hopped on a bus and made the 40 minute bus ride into Dublin proper.

More to come soon…for now, I’m off to relax and explore Trinity College.

Alex Berger

I am a travel blogger and photographer. I also am involved in academic research into the study abroad and backpacker communities.

2 Comments

  • Andrew Meyers
    July 14, 2009

    Sounds like the actual trip wasn't too bad except for the sandwiched flight to Atlanta, but it could have been much worse if you had to do that to Ireland.

    Can't help but laugh at the fact that you forgot a day pack and the credit card. If something doesn't go wrong right before traveling then you're wrong…something always has to happen. =) Glad you made it in safe.

    Can't wait to hear more.

    Reply
  • Andrew Meyers
    July 14, 2009

    Sounds like the actual trip wasn't too bad except for the sandwiched flight to Atlanta, but it could have been much worse if you had to do that to Ireland.

    Can't help but laugh at the fact that you forgot a day pack and the credit card. If something doesn't go wrong right before traveling then you're wrong…something always has to happen. =) Glad you made it in safe.

    Can't wait to hear more.

    Reply

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