Travel Journal April 5, 1999
Dublin: Cruising the geek scene.


Mrs. Sile (the owner of the B&B) is very Irish - she's always looking out for my well being, especially insisting that I get enough to eat in the morning. "If you keep feeding my like this, I'm not going to fit into my trousers," I quipped. "Nah, not with all the walkin' you'll be doin' today" she replied. She's very impressed with my laptop (never seen anything like it before), and likes looking at the pictures that I've taken during the previous day.

I had noticed the day before small yellow signs proclaiming "Sci-fi Film, Comic, Book Faire - Easter Monday - Olympic Ballroom" so I proceeded down there to check it out and see if I could find some fellow wizards with which to hob-nob. Unfortunately, I quickly realized that a "comic faire" is not a "convention" - there were no speakers or scheduled events, just a huckster room (media oriented) and an autograph signing by the fellow who plays Boba Fett. There were also some games of the Star Wars collectable card game being played upstairs on a few tables, but I wasn't interested in that.


However, I did find a few interesting folks to talk to, some of the organizers of the local science fiction club, and also of Octocon, a "real" SF convention that happens in october.

Later, I decided to check out one of the local cyber cafes, this one is called "Planet Cyber Cafe", and it's the only one that would let me hook up my laptop to their ethernet. (The sysadmin here is also the first person who expressed a security concern about me having access to their network, most of the cybercafe tech people either didn't know or didn't care.) The main server at Planet is a Linux system, and we had a long chat about Linux, swapping various tips and bits of advise. I also helped him a bit with his kernel upgrade problems. As a result of this, he refused to take any payment from me for the time I spent using the network.

Note that this room in the picture is actually underground; There's a record store at ground level.

Since this was Easter Monday, most of the city was still closed, so I spent most of the day simply walking around and looking at the various sights. For example, there's a very interesting little arcade (i.e. indoor mini-mall) next door to the Planet cafe.

When I got back to my room that evening, I discovered that Mrs. Sile was in the process of washing my clothes - said she was doing a load anyway and it was no trouble to throw my stuff in too.