A full day of travel yesterday and then I’m in Dublin, a chatty taxi driver explaining to me why he has to take the long way around St. Stephen’s Green to get me to my hotel, The Fitzwilliam.
“They make us go this way,” he says as we pass Trinity College and then the bronze replica of Molly Malone—the tart with the cart, as Dubliners call her.
I hum the song to myself: In Dublin’s Fair City/Where the girls are so pretty/I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone/As she wheel’d her wheel barrow/Through streets broad and narrow/Crying cockles and mussels alive, alive o!
And then we are here, at the Fitzwilliam, a doorman in gray top coat and hat rushing out to open the taxi door. And it hits me with sadness and remembrance, this Dublin smell: wet, dusty, green, with a tinge of smoke painted over everything.
Minutes later I’m in my room, which is too hot and closed up. I push open the window, stick a hand out just as it starts raining, look out over the fullness of Stephen’s Green, the boiling black clouds, Dubliners in the street hustling about, dashing to get out of the late May downpour.
I’m home again in Ireland.
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