Day three we woke up super early. I’m talking roughly 7:10AM. We showered and headed to O’Brien’s for a quick breakfast and coffee. Then, we joined a bunch of other Notre Dame fans and headed to Mass. How often are you going to be able to attend Mass with the Archbishop of Dublin, in the courtyard of a castle? Probably NEVER. I’m so glad we were both amped about going.
For Adam there were two highlights. 1) holding both my hands as I stood in front of him while we sang Our Father. Most people weren’t even holding their hands up. 2) In his words: I just think it’s pretty cool in general that you can have a football team so far away, in a different country, where everyone is so united in faith that we could spend a Mass together and turn to each other and say, “Peace be with you” to every fan standing around you.
For me, it was being with a million priests on stage, in fantastic robes that had this amazing orange fade thing going on, scouting the crowd for crazy, wonderful old ladies in awesome Notre Dame gear and going to Mass in Dublin Castle, and praying for my future, my family and friends. Sometimes, I feel like I lose a little faith, not consistently going to mass with all the work travel. One wonderful thing like this, is really centering. Hearing all the tumultuous Irish history and the role Catholicism, The Vatican and Britain had in either rising, pacifying or restructuring this land has been really fascinating.
After Mass we were led through the gates of Dublin Castle by the Notre Dame Marching Band straight onto Castle Street and down Dame Street to Temple Bar. It was absolutely incredible, again, to be a part of an American Mob (35,000 Americans) to set down on Dublin, close down the streets and follow an American College Football team band through town. People watching from their windows and tourist trains thought we were bonkers. We tailgated through Temple Bar, which was probably 95% ND, and 5% Navy. A lot of bars just had ND stuff up, probably with our Irish connections. Notre Dame became known as the Fighting Irish in the 1920’s as a result of a huge influx of Catholic Irish Immigrants to the US, often downcast by fellow immigrants. The University turned it into a positive phrase, to show that the University would fight, just as the Irish, through tough times and come out on top. Recent football seasons show otherwise, but eventually, we’ll be good again.
Caught a shuttle to Aviva Stadium, and then wandered around aimlessly looking for the stupid Will Call. Literally FOREVER. Finally made it in. It’s fascinating how the load that place. You have to go into the proper gate, or you can’t get to your seats. It’s super weird, but a little efficient. Five flights of stairs and we made it to our level. Seats were comparable to our Seahawks tickets. The only down side was we couldn’t actually see a scoreboard, the stadium was weird, so we left not knowing the final score. It was pretty cool. I was amazed by the amount of respect both teams showed for each other. I have to admit that every time I see a Seaman in uniform it brings back fond memories of my brother, his time in the Navy, and the extreme patriotism I have for my country. That being said, we totally slaughtered them. 50-10. That’s what, we in the know, call a slaughter.
Caught a couple cabs to take us to a couple bottle shops and we totally bought some awesome things, or so Adam tells me. I told him there is very few a wife that would allow this kind of trolling through Dublin, for beers, let alone be the one leading the flight to find them! Please feel free to remind him what a catch I am whenever you see him.
Back at the hostel now, planning Sunday in Dublin.