Le Weekend

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Ah, Le Weekend.
I had a most excellent weekend. It was one of those particularly memorable ones from start to finish; yet nothing particularly phenomenal happened. But hey, it worked for me. This is also my very first 2016 post, so many hellos and well wishes, folks!

The title of this post ‘Le Weekend’ because it sounds cool, doesn’t it? Now I don’t want to alarm you – but I’m not even French. If I was, I might have called this post ‘fin de semaine’ but I’m told the French don’t really use that either.
It saddens me a little that over the last few years with zero practice, I’ve lost a lot of my French along the way. ‘Zero practice’ highlighting the self sabotaging obvious here. Merde. But recently I’ve been reading a lot of the amazing lifestyle blog Mango & Salt (which is French) and I don’t use the Google translate function in order to challenge the ol’ brain somewhat. And when reading posts, I actually know what’s going on! That’s something, right? Good old Latin based languages, it’s amazing how your mind knits recognisable words together, and fills in the blanks based on context.
…and I’m rambling! RAMBLING, AGAIN. Sure I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t address you all with les rambles along the way.

So, Le Weekend started on Friday afternoon, when I offered to take my dear Mother to the city so she could do some bits and pieces. Note I didn’t say I went to the city to shop, because January is never kind in terms of dollar.

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The chauffeuring deal worked out well though, because my kind and dear Mother took pity on my dwindling bank balance and bought me some very love things: Charlotte Tibury stuff. K.I.S.S.I.N.G: Bitch Perfect and gloss in Sweet Stiletto. These are my first two products by Charlotte Tilbury and I love them. These two products are in very attractive nude-pink tones that won’t wash you out. As a fervent admirer of fuchsia pinks, red and orange lipsticks, these makes a nice change. Thanks MOM! It’s not like I was drowned in Christmas presents recently or whatever. You’re a good lady. You know the suss.

A case of a dwindling bank balance doesn’t mean I don’t spend anything at all, or this would be a very boring post. I was just more mindful of my spending, per se, while payday is still what feels like forever away. Not spending any money at all leads to sadness; in my case anyway. Because I mean, really? A weekend with no spending? Nah. Come on.
So while in the city I took the opportunity to get some rice paper in the Asia Market on Drury Street to make Vietnamese spring rolls (1.85 for a huge pack!) and went to Marks & Spencer for some good quality avocados. They now do little ziplock bags of mini Haas avocados for €2.99.
Yes, I’m fully aware I’m writing about my weekend with avocados but hear me out! If you want consistently good rich and creamy avocados, M&S is the place to go. I’ve been getting them here every couple of weeks for the past couple of years, because I couldn’t live without my daily dose of avocado habit that I picked up in Salamanca. These dinky little ones work out at about 60 cent each but there’s less waste and each one is the perfect individual serving. They’re ideal for when you don’t want an entire large avocado to yourself, as no matter what way you store the other half, it goes brown and gross.
Just in case you’re all, “M&S purchases on the poorest month of the year, who does she think she is!” then I also recommend Lidl. They have a new avocado supply from Chile called ‘Ready to Eat’ which although aren’t as flavoursome or of the same quality as the M&S ones, are still consistently green and buttery and stay ripe for a couple of days. Far better than the rock hard bright green ones some supermarkets are pushing. They never ripen! I’m pretty sure they were frozen and shipped to make a quick buck. There you are now. The life and times of avocado with Emma.

We finished the evening off with a drink in The Bailey on Duke Street as we often do, and I settled in for a wild Friday night of U.S. trip image sorting (can’t rush these things, the trip was a mere 4 months ago) and started my new book, ‘June’ by Gerbrand Bakker. I love the beginning of a new book, and the smell of fresh pages, each one filled with so much to UNCOVER! I’ll review here when I’m done.

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Saturday morning (and its indulgent ways) was spent the way I often tend to spend it, and I really love it.  I often get up around 11 after lying in bed looking at the roof for a few minutes, stretching and making weird squeaking noises. Wow, you too?!
I then make a breakfast (at snail’s pace) that requires a little more effort, drink plenty of coffee and wake up very slowly. I also do life admin and diary organising and sometimes make to-do lists. Also at snails pace. I squeeze in some sort of cardio or weights too, shower, get suited and booted and see where the day takes me.
The weather was awful on Saturday. Freezing cold, rainy and generally pretty miserable. Peter and I went to Avoca in Malahide Castle for a wander and some good coffee. Malahide is definitely home to the best coffee in North County Dublin at the moment. Both Avoca and the newly opened Donnybrook Fair serve excellent coffee. The type of pleasing coffee you’d only otherwise find in the city. We need more places like these…although Costa is pretty good and we have a handful of those around. Please point me in the direction of other excellent North County spots if you know some? Help a girl out.

malahidePhoto: @peterstnsz
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By the time we were leaving the weather had gotten worse, with raindrops bouncing inches off the ground. Peter took a good shot (above!) where just for a moment, Malahide Castle and Gardens looked like Gotham city. This makes me Batman. I’m very much OK with that.
Saturday night was spent dining with family and our closest friends, of whom I have mentioned here several times before. We sat at a really nice horseshoe table at Masterson’s Steakhouse on Main Street, Swords. There was live music which was nice (I never really get the chance to sit upstairs.) We shared wings, a crab and trout pot, and Jane Russell black pudding to start, and for my main I had a delicious steak with champ mash, crispy onion strings and hollandaise sauce. If you find yourself there, definitely go for a steak. They serve some of the best this side of Dublin.

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Sunday morning was all sun and clear blue skies but very, very cold. Peter and I wrapped up well (we both have gross coughs) and went to the Irish Museum of Modern Art for the day.
Museums! Places people visit to change things up, learn something new…or when they’re poor. The last time I was here was in March for a prohibition ball, so it was nice to do some exploring in daylight. We walked around the gardens and around Kilmainham and I played with my Instax90 Polaroid camera Mr. Peter got me for Christmas. He does love his photography.

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SOUL EATING SHADOW MONSTER!

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She knows how to get ahead.

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Kissing cars in the courtyard. Part of the What We Call Love exhibition, I believe.

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I took this through a pink sticker on the glass on one of the exhibition buildings. You are not experiencing a retinal haemorrhage.  Your eyesight is very much OK. Do not be alarmed.

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Left: A simple but cute projection display, the sky on the inside of a book! Right: Cards from the Les Levine exhibition.

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A quick stop at cafe Itsa@Imma. Itsa use local and seasonal produce to create lots of dishes and baked goods, including healthy options, gluetn free treats and organic drinks. It’s also super cute in there, and you’re underground.

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I call this one, ‘hanging out in the basement with terrible posture’

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I love all food. Even if it’s fake and made of plastic at The Old Man’s House exhibition.

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Seriously striking images from  Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst in the What We Call Love exhibition. There’s a pretty intense short film alongside the images in this exhibition, running until February 7th. Other exhibitions we visited are listed here. Make sure to give the IMMA a visit, it’s a nice way to spend an afternoon and there’s plenty to do, and 90% of it is freeeeeeee.

immaPhoto: @peterstnsz
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We left the museum at sunset and finished our weekend with all you can eat sushi for €20 and cheap cocktails in Capitol on Aungier Street. Capitol is a handy one for a tight month, as any cocktail on the menu is €5, all day everyday. Sometimes they have offers where you get two for €6. Mad stuff altogether.
Good weekend achievement unlocked. And sure it’s Thursday now, so the next one is almost upon us. Who knows what this one will bring?

♥ ♥ ♥

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