It may be because we don’t have classes or any real responsibilities, but so far I am LOVING Dublin. Between good beer, imposing stone buildings around every corner, and locals who call all sorts of things “grand,” it feels like a good place to be. Plus people are super friendly! Maybe I just got used to the, ahem, reserved nature of Parisians, but I went to a local running group and was pleasantly surprised to find everyone super chatty and welcoming.
Because I’m me and I can’t help myself, I decided to start training for the Limerick Marathon in May. I forgot how much work marathon training is–in addition to the actual running, there’s the planning and stretching and showers and feeding myself (I’m even more hungry all the time than usual). It’s a lot, but I’m also loving the motivation to get out there and explore the city on foot.
Classes start tomorrow! This semester is more business and regulatory focused, and we have a big development project. But because we’re technically in the school of culinary arts, I’m also taking an extra class–on cake baking! I’m stoked.
Just like that, we’re leaving Paris and on our way to Dublin. It’s crazy how fast this semester flew by! We only had about a week and a half left after the holidays, but it was full of report writing, presentation giving, and plenty of final work to fill it quite full. Hard to believe I was in Boston only 11 days ago! It’s been a struggle but at least it was just a short time.
We made good use of our last weekend in Paris with a climb to the towers of Notre Dame and its amazing views of the city. It was a great vantage point for scoping out our future apartments, judging entirely by rooftop gardens, of course. I spent most of Sunday just wandering around, making my way to an incredible pastry shop (of course) and stumbling on unexpected views of the Eiffel Tower, as you do. And then I spent a glorious few hours sitting in a park, eating my cake as slowly as possible, and finishing my book. Before the cold sank in, it was a pretty perfect afternoon.
So, off to Dublin and new adventures! I’m excited to be there!
Man, getting two weeks of holiday break is incredible and makes up for all the rest of the work of grad school. I’m just heading back to Paris now and have done an excellent job of ignoring the paper I should be writing in favor of baking, hiking, drinking lots of coffee, spending time with family, and generally having a great time.
The whole family made it home, so we spent a good amount of time just hanging out and catching up. Before daylight saving’s time, my sister and I were fully 12 hours of time difference apart, which means I think we can legitimately say that we span the globe. After being so far away, it was so nice to be home together! I tend to come home, immediately take up residence in my favorite comfy chair, and read a whole book. I also did the classic college thing of pushing so hard to finish everything before I got home that once I made it back, I got sick and spent the whole time sniffling only to recover just in time to return. Oh well!
I took full advantage of my parents’ lovely and just redone kitchen for baking plenty of cakes, cookies, and tarts—after months of my tiny dorm kitchen and very minimal equipment, my mom’s cupboard of baking pans of all shapes and sizes feels like the height of luxury. I think my favorite was the butterscotch roll cake, done vertically as inspired by Julie Richardson’s Vintage Cakes. So delicious!
I also got to stop in Boston on the way back and crammed in seeing as many people as possible in the three days I was there. My friends were very generous in their rescheduling and dealing with the general mayhem, and it was such an amazing time. I got to celebrate a birthday and my dragon boat team even threw a party for me! (To be honest, I was crashing an erg session, but I took full advantage of the chance to see everyone.) I even got a medal!
Finishing this up late because I got to Paris, went straight from the airport to class, and haven’t stopped yet. Less than a week of class left, so we’re full steam ahead on a final paper and a few presentations. And Dublin in one week!
To everyone I saw over break: it was so good to see you. Thank you for your hospitality, flexibility, willingness to overlook my radio silence, and pretending to care about my school stress. It meant so much to me to get you see you all!