Gavin (left), his brother Aidan, and the Monday night musicians at Hughes Pub.
Finding Gavin Duffy has been a challenge lately. This case is much different from finding Kevin Donleavy, but this story also ends in a pub.
November is notoriously hectic in the university world, and Gavin works so hard and teaches so many hours that he doesn’t have much time for lunch chatter these days. In addition, he’s got his hands full at home with three growing kids and another (surprise!) on the way. (Congrats are in order to Gavin and Carmel and their three very-happy-to-have-a-new-sibling kids!)
But I also want to do my job here, which is to help Gavin progress with his dissertation. I want to make sure we’re ready to meet with his dissertation advisor Thursday. We really need to have something new to say. We need to show some progress — so as to use Rob’s (and our) time well.
In any case, I know I can track Gavin down in my own neighborhood once a week, when his group of musicians gathers to play at Hughes Pub.
We shared our research progress, quickly between songs last night, and had some fun in the meantime.
I’ve spent more than a little time at Hughes Pub this week. Saturday night I went in at ten o’clock not knowing a soul. I left at two in the morning with three new friends: Dubliners Kathleen, Sean, and Mick.
Paddy Woodward described the feel at Hughes as a fine suburban-style pub, if I remember correctly. I didn’t understand until I visited the back part last Saturday. I arrived with the tourist crowd…
…and left with the locals. Thanks for tons of laughs Kathleen, Sean, and Mick!
Esther loves musical productions. Surprisingly, she wasn’t much interested in seeing plays while she was here. That’s because English is her fifth language and she was worried she’d have trouble understanding.
You heard right. She speaks five languages: (1) Swiss German (in Berne dialect), as well as (2) High German, (3) French, (4) as much Italian as I speak, and also (5) English.
Esther used to take in exchange students like me as a way of building her skills in English. I was the first in a long line of American exchange students to frequent her Ferenberg home.
And while she was here we painted the town red! We soaked in all these musical performances during her one-week stay in Dublin:
- The musical An American Idiot which, like so many musicals these days, has a plot contrived as a way to package a band’s album into a Broadway show. Wikapedia explains “American Idiot is the seventh studio album by the American punk rock band Green Day.” Although the plot is understandably disappointing, Green Day’s “punk” music is actually quite festive. The performance concluded with the whole company singing “It’s something unpredictable but in the end it’s right. I hope you have the time of your life!” I’d been looking for an opportunity to visit the theater building itself, because it was designed by Studio Daniel Libeskind (the firm that designed the building to replace the World Trade Towers), and so I was perfectly happy that Esther actually asked to spend an evening immersed in American idiot-ry. The theater is quite beautiful. However the knee-room was lacking where I sat and I determined once and for all that nose-bleed seats and traveling Broadway shows don’t mix. The sound balance is often poor in the far upper corner when the show hits a new space.
- Arlington Hotels Traditional Live Irish Music and Irish Dancing dinner show. The musicians sang “take me home country roads” (which is a favorite drinking song in Switzerland and pub song in Ireland). They also dedicated a song to Esther and me that was quite fitting. Something about friends and traveling, if I recall correctly after this whirl-wind week. I was the only one in the place getting the host’s jokes. (He used to be a city planner, so perhaps we share some mental wiring?)
- Gavin and his brother playing with other musicians at Hughes Pub. One of the guys in the band recognized the faces in Glen McClure’s photos from Achill Island (see my posts Leader of the Band and Drummer Girl).
- The opera Hansel and Gretel, performed in the beautiful Gaiety Theater. I enjoyed this production more than any other opera I’ve ever seen. So I wasn’t too opposed when Esther asked to go see Disney on Ice for her last night in town. (It wasn’t my own top choice for the evening, but I gave in!)
- Esther had never attended an ice-skating show in person and throughly enjoyed seeing Disney on Ice’s Passport to Adventure held at the Royal Dublin Society last night.
- Two back-to-back visits to The Cobblestone pub. Thursday night we visited with Fulbright scholar Bob Trumble, his lovely wife Ann, and Ann’s her sister and brother-in-law. When we’re in Virginia, Bob and Ann live in Williamsburg–just up the road from Dave and me. On Thursday Tom gave Esther a copy of his CD. She glowed with happiness. Her eyes sparkled with excitement. She’s so lovable! We visited the pub again last night and got to hear Tom’s brother Neil (and Neil’s son) play.
Esther has just left for the airport, and things are now quiet and still. I’ve got mounds of work to do and yet hundreds of memories of this past week that I still want to share with you. I hope to find time to post more for you in the coming days.
Gavin (far left) and his brother, Aidan, are among the musicians who play at Hughes Pub on Monday nights. Esther (far right) was soaking in the melodies.
Grand Canal Commercial Development and Bord Gáis Energy Theatre.
Logo from the musical “An American Idiot.”
Reflection on the Theater facade.
Inside of the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre in Dublin designed by Studio Daniel Libeskind.
The Samuel Beckett Bridge designed by Santiago Calatrava’s office.
Gavin (far left) and his brother, Aidan, are among the musicians who play at Hughes’ Pub on Monday nights. Esther (far right) was soaking in the melodies.
This musician was at the Achill Island St. Patrick’s Day parade that Glen McClure photographed last March. He knows many people in Glen’s photos.
The American Embassy threw an election-night party with All-American flair.
Election Night at the Guinness Storehouse.
An election night discussion led by a lecturer from Trinity College Dublin.
The Ambassador to Ireland spoke to us from Pittsburgh on election night.
Poster from the opera “Hansel and Gretal.”
Shannon and Esther after the opera.
Shannon mimicking the witch.
Captain Hook got quite bossy in Disney on Ice.
Scenes from Passport to Adventure a Disney on Ice production.
I finally got to hear Tom’s brother Neil play the pipes last night. My camera didn’t have any juices left, so I downloaded this photo from http://www.chuckbrodsky.com
, but all these guys were at the Cobblestone last night.