Monday, 31 August 2015

4-day trip to Ireland (Dublin and Galway)


Went to Dublin and Galway in Ireland with the wife for four days last week. Here's the itinerary of our trip:
  • Thursday 27th morning flew over from London Stansted to Dublin airport with Ryanair.
  • Thursday 27th afternoon picked up our rented car from Europcar at the airport and drove to our hotel (Aspect Hotel Park West) located west of Dublin town centre near Park West and Cherry railway station.
  • Thursday 27th afternoon got the train from Park West and Cherry railway station to Dublin Heuston railway station and then the Luas tram on to the town centre (Abbey Street) from where we started our walk south to Dublin Mosque passing Trinity College, Merrion Square and St Stephen's Green en route.
  • Thursday 28th evening prayed Asr and Maghrib at Dublin Mosque and had dinner in between in the Mosque canteen.
  • Friday 28th morning drove down to Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland for Jumuah and then had lunch at the Mosque canteen following Jumuah. What a Mosque!
  • Friday 28th afternoon drove further down south to Powerscourt Estate Garden and Waterfall. Highly recommended! 
  • Friday 28th evening drove back up to Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland for Maghrib and a light dinner and then on to our hotel.
  • Saturday 29th morning returned the car in the town centre and then caught the train to Galway.
  • Saturday 29th afternoon walked around Galway town centre and caught a very nice crafts and food fair on Church Lane just off Shop Street.
  • Saturday 29th afternoon picked up our rented car from Budget and drove along the coast to our B&B (Summerville B&B) and then on to Spiddle town, stopping along the way a couple of times and catching the views.
  • Saturday 29th evening drove back into Galway town centre for dinner. We went to Pearla Na Mara restaurant and found it to be very nice!
  • Sunday 30th morning drove along the coast back into Galway town passing and stopping at Salthill en route before returning our car.
  • Sunday 30th afternoon got the train back from Galway to Dublin Heuston railway station and then the Luas tram on to Abbey Street to pick up some goodies before getting the Airlink 747 bus from Busaras to Dublin airport.
  • Sunday 30th evening got our return flight from Dublin airport back to London Stansted.
Good trip overall alhamdulillah. We could have done with an extra day in Dublin to ride the DART local train to explore the east coast and an extra day in Galway to explore Connemara National Park... but I guess that leaves us things to do should we return!

Here are our pictures from the trip:

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Muslim names and PayPal transactions!

So my account was blocked by PayPal over a month ago and I've been chasing them up to figure out why and when I found out why... it had me in stitches!

It turns out it that my attempt to forward £100 to my friend Ali with a note "Deposit money from Abdul Basit and Taleb" contained a forbidden word in it: Abdul Basit. No joke! PayPal is instructed by the American government to flag all transactions which contain the word Abdul Basit in it.

So, lesson learnt: if you're going to use PayPal to transfer money to friends, avoid using Muslim names in the transaction note or risk getting your account blocked! True story :-D