Writing Workshops, Retreats, Mentoring

Day 8 2016 – Footloose in Dublin, our Closing Dinner & Performances

Day 8 was our Dublin day. Yoga and writing as usual to begin with, tucked into various corners in the Hotel Gresham.

Then the intrepid Joe Nix offered us a driving tour of downtown Dublin, wheeling that big Royal Irish bus around the old streets with ease and panache. He dropped us off, one by one and two by two along the way to pursue our own interests for the day – the Book of Kells, Trinity College, the Guinness factory, St Stephen’s Green, the Kilmainham Gaol and the Dublin Writers’ Museum. What a feast!

 

We were told that we couldn’t miss the view of Dublin from the top of the factory/museum, and it was a truly spectacular view.
 
But the 7th floor was so crowded we didn’t stay long. (OK We finished our delicious pints of Guinness first!) We were eager to get back down to cobblestone level and walk the historic streets of this literary city.

 
You’ve got to love a city (and a country) that is so wildly celebratory of its writers and its literary history.
 
This bar, the Bachelor Inn, is covered on the outside with portraits and quotes from the likes of Jonathan Swift, Oscar Wilde, James Joyce, George Bernard Shaw, Padraig Pearce and more.

 
Now I know why they call them saints…

 
There are marvelous peaceful places in Dublin, even in the heart of this bustling city.

 
Hanging out in the Temple Bar area we came across an open street book celebration. Like moths to a flame…


 
And it’s amazing how even in a city this size, we would bump into each other. This encounter with Shari on the Ha’penny Bridge gave us the rare opportunity for James and Sue to have a picture of ourselves together.

 
On the evening of our last night we had a big private room upstairs at Nancy Hands Bar and Restaurant – an establishment with a long and rich history.

 
There we ate, drank, made merry, and had our final night together. Our tradition on the final evening together is to share our writing with each other. Hosted by James, he coaxed (OK, not everyone needed coaxing!) many of our writers to grab the mic and treat everyone to a piece that they had written on the trip. An international reading performance credit for everyone who took the stage.

 
A raucous bunch to be sure!

 
One final group shot at the end of our final evening together.

 
Okay – it might not have been quite the end of the evening. There might have been another pub, a little more merriment, and some silliness with James Joyce on the way home to the Hotel Gresham.

Maybe.

There are no pictures from the final morning – the last collection of luggage by Royal Irish. (They were SO professional about that at every hotel.) Nobody wanted to say goodbye, so we didn’t take pictures of the sadness.
 
But when we got home, everyone wanted to stay in touch. With Doris’s inspirational leadership, Inkslingers put together an anthology from the trip. Anytime we want, we can open that collection and reminisce about the quality of the writing and the friendships germinated during our inspirational journey together.

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Sue Reynolds and James Dewar are both certified in the AWA (Amherst Writers & Artists) method of leading workshops.

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