Today marks Friday. The fourth day in the educational setting. Friday's at Sancta Maria College are similar to half days in the states - class sessions are over around 12.45 (There are several teachers who provide revision classes or extra help after classes are over). The day started off with me sitting in two of Rachael's math classes involving 1st Years and 3rd Years respectively. In both cases, Rachael was observed by the inspector who came in to inspect and observe the entire math department and give feedback to the teachers and staff. The inspector introduced herself to me and wonder who I was and what I was doing in the classroom interactively. After explain who I was she remarked that she was excited for me and hoped that things were going smoothly. Before the day was over, I met up with both Rachael and Jenny to figure out my teaching schedule for the upcoming week. The finalized schedule had me teaching 1st Years with Jenny, 2nd Years with Rachael, and then 4th Years or Transition Years with Rachael. This allotted me enough time to get a grasp of the content while also having a variety of students to teach.
After changing and prepping to go out for the night, my roommate and I caught the 15B bus into Dublin and got off near George Street. From there, we took a direct route right through Dublin Castle onto the Gardens of Dublin Castle. This area was pretty neat seeing a lot of "green" in the middle of Dublin. There was a nearby library that we both insisted at some point we should return to go through. We then continued onward to the are surrounding Christ Church cathedral, or CCC as I called it. Later on in the evening we would actually be inside CCC for a concert provided by UCD students and the orchestra. Bust first came food!
John Nola, our tour guide, insisted on trying as much fish and chips as we could while staying in Ireland. We took full advantage of that advice - we stopped right by at a place called Leo Burdocks. LB was a great fish and chips place that was made for takeout only (takeout is basically what it means - you eat on the run or a good way of saying we don't have room for seating!). With no surprise, since this was the second time I had ate there in three years, I knew exactly what to expect - a bunch of "chips" which is just french fries with the choice of salt and vinegar and a big piece of good cod fish. And so it was, a great big meal!
When finished with the meal, John and I were meeting up with Sarah and Ashley, two other members of the student teaching group, as well as the rest of the gang who had decided to go to CCC to see the orchestra concert for the night. Before though the four of us decided to take the tour of CCC. Tour began right in the middle of the church involving tombs that were replicated of those that were previous contained in the church. The tour guide was amazing - making grade notes of the art form and specifications of the church while also amusing us with great wit and spontaneous comments. From seeing the likes of a duck leaving prints in the molding of when the church was built to the comments about famous people and "the enterprise" and to comment about a mouse versus an actual rat being chased by a cat getting stuck in the original organ (James Joyce reference), the entire tour of CCC was spot on.
After the tour was over, it was time to get some food - Ashley and Sarah mentioned about going near Temple Bar area and see what was available. We stopped out three different places: Quays Bar, Temple Bar (YES Temple Bar is located in the area named Temple Bar), and Norseman, with the latter being the designated place of eating. I had a great spicy chicken sandwich with some chips. Bulmers original Irish cider was the drink of the night. After finishing dinner, we were greeted by the rest of the group heading back to CCC while being entertained by side-street performers during the walk. We finally reached CCC and were about to enter.
The concert was spectacular, but that is saying the least of it all - the group of students performing were also raising money for depression awareness. The concert was a great combination of art and masterpiece. The concert involved Tchaikovsky, Vaughan Williams, Tallis, and Beethoven. The music filled the air of the amazing structure, engulfing the audience in attendance.
After the concert finished, we then headed back home. Now since the concert was a late start, the chance of us catching a bus before they stop running around 23.30 were pretty slim. We walked all the way down through Temple Bar and even farther. No sign of the needed 15B bus to catch occurred - this meant we had to take a taxi home. Expecting the worse, turns out the rates are not too bad for taking a taxi. By the time we had reached home, the time was already 00.30. Time for bed, knowing that we had to get up around 7.30 in the morning.
All in all, a great evening, a great time, and great enjoyment. Hopefully it continues tomorrow on our first weekend trip!