When I was about 12, I went with my sister Leah to Dublin with my grandmother and my late grandfather. I was in the middle of my punk rock sage; it involved a lot of combat boots, cameo, oilskin and green hair. My favourite photograph of my grandfather and I is where I'm leaning on his shoulder with green hair. Miss him, crazy old man.
We went to a number of places in the week we were in Dublin, including where my grandfather was born -- but the most memorable for me was Trinity College.
I've always liked two things more then most other things: books and art. When we visited Trinity College we went to the library and the long room. They have, I have read, 4.25 million books and counting at Trinity College. My heart, it weeps with joy.
But walking down the Long Room was like... Stepping into some fantasy land of my childhood. The places I -wanted- to be, but wasn't really sure existed. Books. Knowledge. Antiquity. The smell of leather and wood polish and paper. Tomes I could never touch, let alone read. Busts of dead people I didn't know but wanted to. I got to see the Book of Kells when I was there -- I remember being terribly impressed.
I might have been into the Clash and B.A.D & NoFX at the time, but damn, was I ever impressed to see the Book of Kells.
Oh, and the book refurbishment centre. Watch scientific historian types carefully cleaning four hundred year old tomes. That was also terribly impressive -- I remember having some sort of envy towards them. What is the word for academic envy? There has to be one...
I went through a period of time post-Dublin trip where a lot of what I drew was inspired by knot-work and iconography I saw in the illuminated scripts of the Book of Kells. Sadly it's all been lost in the numerous moves since I was 12-14, but it was really great. I remember being particular happy with a set of geese I drew, eating each others tail feathers, their necks all knotted. Heh.
Other News: I stopped drinking coffee after 12am, OMG shock horror shock. Normally I would be the one to say I am only human when I drink coffee -- just I want to see if it has any effect on my sleeping/mood/etc. I've been drinking dandelion and burdock tea instead.
Although I admit, I have started drinking hot chocolate. But not just any hot chocolate - oh no - fair trade organic hot chocolate with 40% cocoa solids and natural cane sugar. Just when I make it, I add half a teaspoon of mixed spice and half a teaspoon of crushed black pepper.
I love black pepper in hot chocolate. Love.
Oh, interesting link on the genetic similarities between Britons & Irish, which suggests we're all a lot more similar then we originally thought. Because before we were Celts and Saxons and now we're... Uh... 14,000 year old Spaniards that moved back north. WTF?