Sun Parties

Ok, ok, I’ve been banging on about how lovely and sunny its been for the last few posts. But the fact is, its SO lovely and SO sunny I just can’t get over it. Yesterday afternoon I sat in St. Stephen’s Green for 4 hours straight and read my book. I did the same the day before. I took off my shoes. I wore sunglasses. I watched the water sparkle (it actually SPARKLED. I’m not sure if it was sunlight or chemicals or little volts of electricity, but the water SPARKLED in front of my very eyes, ‘Hey there, look at us, we’re water in the sunlight. WATCH OUR SPARKLY FINGERS, MOTHERF*CKERS.’ Um… yes… water doesn’t have fingers, but… ). I saw swans swimming gracefully under the bridge in some sort of weird real life re-enactment of those romantic rides at old fairgrounds. I saw seagulls wash themselves in the water, because it was so DARN WARM that the Irish seagulls were clearly suffering from heat exhaustion. There’s something strangely hypnotic about a seagull washing itself. I was trying to think of what it looked like so I could report back to you all, but it was such an extensive process I’m not sure I’ll do it justice. They do this weird little neck scoop, presumably to get the water on to their heads and down their backs and necks, which was kind of cool. But, the more impressive move, was the kind of butterfly arm swing they did with their wings, which would throw arches of water up and over them, and after a while would so destabilise them, they would kind of tip into the water until their head went under and they had to stop and right themselves. Endlessly amusing.
But, what I think is really hilarious is how the state of the city changes in the sun. I guess it would happen in any city, but its just so remarkable in Dublin, that I have to dedicate a post to it. Its like a party atmosphere. Its like everyone in Dublin goes, ‘Sun? Hells yes, street party!’
Everyone’s nicest clothes come out, their hair is done that much prettier (or maybe its just not wilting under the incessant rain) and their make-up is done that bit brighter (or maybe its just the sun on their faces making their make-up sparkle like a lake in St. Stephen’s Green). Everyone looks cooler, because they’re all wearing sunglasses, and it is a scientifically proven fact that sunglasses make you look cooler. That’s why celebrities wear them.
Walking down Grafton St. (the main pedestrian shopping strip in Dublin – think Hunter or Pitt St. malls) yesterday, the celebratory atmosphere was so palpable. Normally there’s a few buskers around, playing Irish fiddle-dee-dee music or, you know, mournful soft rock, like Coldplay’s ‘Yellow’. Yesterday, the number of buskers had tripled. But not only that, but it seemed like the normal, rainy day sad buskers were gone, and they had all been replaced with the happy, sunny, carnival day buskers! Instead of sad white boy music, we had big band and jazz – there were saxophones and electric guitars people! There was a man creating giant soap bubbles and sending them out over the heads of the shoppers. There was a man making balloon animals. There was a dread-locked man doing a dance with a glass ball (I don’t know – it looked cool).
Every available green inch of St. Stephen’s Green was covered with people on picnic blankets, reading books, listening to music, sunbathing, playing games, dancing, singing, eating, looking pretty. I was trying to remember if there was this level of celebration when there was a sunny day back home, and, of course, I came to the conclusion that it wasn’t of the same level. I mean, if you’re used to the sun, if it comes out every second day, you can usually skip a day or two. You can think, ‘Oh, I’m a bit tired today,’ or, ‘I have heaps of work today, so I’ll just stay inside,’ without worrying if this is the last sunny day you will see for two months (people tell me its been quite rainy in Sydney this year. Maybe sunny days are more exciting these days to Sydney-siders, but I’m talking about my many years of El Nino experience). So, not everyone comes out at once, and they don’t drop all their other commitments to just ‘be’ in the sun. Not so, over here. I had plenty of things I should have been getting on with the last two days, all related to my laptop. So, all things that needed to be done inside. But every time I suggested that I should consider going home, a slightly hysterical voice in my head started to laugh maniacally, ‘You’re going to give all this up to sit inside and type on your computer? Are you INSANE?’ Normally you’d expect a voice like this to go on and list reasons for why I should stay outside. But, it wasn’t necessary. The rest of me was just like, ‘Oh. Yeah. Course. Stupid me,’ and turned over on the grass. To make sure all my skin was getting equally traumatised, you see.

An accurate depiction of Dublin in the sun. Found at:

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