Jen and I had one shared thought when we got to the door of our hotel room in Shannon. After being in transit for the better part of twelve hours, we were both intending to crank up the A/C to a level of arctic chill, get under some covers, and crash out to equalize our jetlag like we did in Rome. Unfortunately, we had some things to learn about the hospitality industry in Ireland. The room we were given was heated to about 95°F for some odd reason. I asked one of the housekeeping ladies across the way how to turn it down, and she obliged, but for the rest of our stay in the hotel it was ridiculously hot. (Note: There is a small knob on radiators in Ireland with indecipherable markings. Turn it counterclockwise. The other way will heat the room to the approximate surface temperature of the sun.) I opened the window and futzed with the radiator until I was reasonably sure it was off.
This was about 9AM local time, 3AM by my watch. We’d waited an hour to have a room available, and cought a nap on the couches in the “Reading Room”, which was across from the hotel pub and really should have been called “Overflow Area”: the couch I laid on smelled like the floor of a fraternity room.
Another new experience; The Irish believe in the duvet to the excusion of all other bedding materials. They give you a sheet and a blanket/cover that weighs as much as a lead apron, and expect that you will be content to sleep in a pool of your own sweat. We pulled it off, crawled into bed, and passed out uneasily for about 10 hours. I found that I was alternately hot and cold, so I put a corner of the duvet on my ass and left the rest of my body outside, and at least my vital organs stayed at a constant temperature.
At about 6PM local time, we got up and staggered to the restaurant, where we were one of three couples. The food was decent, the beer was tasty, and our waitress gave us some good advice for our trip. We had another beer in the pub and returned back to the room for more sleep.