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Tuesday Road Trip to Cork by Ann Treacy
April 14, 2008, 5:14 pm
Filed under: Cork, Dingle, Galway

Woke up in Galway on Tuesday. The hotel was directly across the street from the Spanish Arch. We took some pictures but what really struck me was the number of men drinking cider by the arch at 10:00 in the morning. I’m pretty sure they would have remarked at our beauty even if they hadn’t been drinking, but it was just something I noted. Actually I noticed quite a few morning drinkers in Galway. I can’t say that I felt like they were all on vacation. And I felt like we were in a lively but not at all risqué neighborhood.

We walked around Galway a little bit. I really liked the city. I had been there before but didn’t remember much. We took a few pictures as you can see below.

Mostly we drove on Tuesday. We covered a ton of ground. We went from Galway down to Dingle. We had lunch in Dingle. We didn’t see the dolphin, sadly. (Rumor has it you can swim with Fungi the dolphin in the Dingle Bay.)

Dingle was nice – but as we headed down to Cork we drove past Inch, which has a beautiful vista. I actually took picture without people in Inch. It was amazing.

Then we headed to Cork. It was interesting to see the different terrain from the day before. The area towards Cork seems so vast in the same way that the Iron Range in Minnesota seems vast to me. Also the natural borders suddenly changed from stone walls to bushes.

The drive into Cork was hellacious. We actually had directions but it didn’t matter much. We saw a Jury’s – got there easily only to find it was the wrong one. Back into the car we ran into a billion one way streets – none of them going the way wanted to go. It took us 40 minutes to get into the hotel and Cork just isn’t that big. We got into the hotel too late for dinner. The garage was full. The Internet wasn’t working. And they didn’t have any decent lager in the pub!

But we got some Chinese take away. I found an Ethernet cord. And the cider was good. So, all’s well that ends well.



Monday Road Trip to Galway by Ann Treacy
April 9, 2008, 8:51 pm
Filed under: Clare, Galway

Monday Anita, Darla and I set off for Galway. Well, really we set off for the Cliffs of Moher – which are pretty much directly west of Dublin on the other side of the country.

We stopped at Conghlan Castle on the way – really just to take pictures.

Next we stopped by Yeats’ Tower in Gort. WB Yeats was a Nobel Prize winning poet, whose works include The Tower.

We stopped to take a picture of the “natural borders” that Darla loves. Today the natural borders were stone fences between properties.

What’s nice is that the Cliffs are about 5 miles away from Lehinch, where we’ll be staying with my family in May. I think it was about 3.5 hour trip. We stopped in Ennis for lunch – but I’m factoring that in. (I know at least 2 readers want that much info on getting to Lehinch.)

The Cliffs of Moher really are amazing. Picture a coastline and now picture it up 214 meters. You can see the Aran Islands and the Twelve Pins (rolling mountains) of Connemara. The weather was perfect although we could see a bad storm blowing in, which of course we ignored until it hit us. Thankfully we were ready to leave when the hail hit. (Proving that God loves us best.)

After the Cliffs we drove through the Burren to get to Galway. It “is a karst landscape, which is “a landscape shaped by the dissolution of a layer or layers of soluble bedrock, usually carbonate rock such as limestone or dolomite.” So in other words, the Burren rocks.

We stopped on the way to Galway on Galway Bay. Maybe the town was Oranmore; maybe not. The waves were washing water unto the bridge and we saw our favorite sign of the trip, pictures below.

After doing so well with driving and directions we had a horrible time finding the hotel when we got into Galway. Luckily we had my friend Kevin to help us – twice. Then we were happy to have Kevin show us the nightlife of Galway. We had a wonderful Indian meal and visited a couple of pubs. They were all pretty lively. One had a band playing and one had a session going on.

The pubs were actually much nicer than many of the pubs I’ve visited in Dublin – in that they were cozy and had fireplaces, which I love.

Finally we took a picture of Lynch Castle for our cousins in Chicago.

I really enjoyed Galway. I recognized almost nothing from when I visited 15 years ago – but the nightlife still seemed good and there’s an artistic feel to the city.



Sunday in South Dublin by Ann Treacy
April 9, 2008, 8:16 am
Filed under: Dublin

Sunday we took advantage of the car and climbed up Killiney Hill in Dalkey. Killiney Hill is not very big but it overlooks the sea and Wicklow, which are both beautiful. The Dalkey area is also beautiful. We stopped for lunch at a place called Nosh.

After lunch we headed to Bray and climbed a little bit up Bray Head. It was beautiful but super windy.



Anita & Darla Visit by Ann Treacy
April 9, 2008, 7:33 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

The Anita, Darla, the girls and I headed into Dublin for the day on Sunday. The weather was great. We had a fun time. We visited Grafton Street and saw the buskers, which for some reason had a very religious bent this weekend. We took some picture at the Molly Malone statue at the bottom of Grafton Street.

We did a quickie tour of Trinity, had dinner at Bewley’s and did the world’s quickest tour of the city center before heading back home.

 



Friday Night at the Horse and Hound by Ann Treacy
April 5, 2008, 1:16 pm
Filed under: Dublin

Last night we met up with two old friends Mary and Paul. Patrick went to school with Paul. They live in North Leitrim with their 3 kids who are round about the same ages as ours. It was fun to meet up with them. Unfortunately it was a late night. We met up at 10:30 and left the bar at 12:30. So it wasn’t too wild – but as I said, late.

It felt even later when we got up this morning at 6:00 to meet Anita and Darla at the airport. The arrived safe and sound. Anita did an excellent job driving from the airport to the house.



Ganstas in Church by Ann Treacy
April 5, 2008, 1:11 pm
Filed under: Dun Laoghaire

We went to 2 interesting lectures this week. And I’m using the royal we here. On Monday night, Kate and Patrick went to school/church to see John the gangster from London talk about how he found God.

Apparently the place was hopping. Patrick thought it was a good night. Kate thought it was strange. I thought it was a little strange too.

On Thursday Patrick and I went to hear Ruth Padel, the keynote speaker for the International Poetry Festival in Dun Laoghaire. (OK, yes I mostly went to have dinner beforehand.)

She talked about reading a poem for sound and about how the vowels move the poem from one line to another. She had a few interesting stories about, for example, the great vowel shift in English that apparently happened between the 12th and 18th centuries. It was the shift that moved us from Middle to Modern English, when English speakers stopped pronouncing vowels like the rest of Europe and started pronouncing them as we do now – closer towards the teeth.

I actually did find this interesting – but the connection between it and reading a poem was a little lost on me



Saturday in Cabinteely by Ann Treacy
April 5, 2008, 1:06 pm
Filed under: Dublin, Dun Laoghaire

Last Saturday we met up with friends David, Andrea and Alex for lunch in Cabinteely and then to play in the park. It was a beautiful spring day. You can see the pictures below.

On Sunday we headed towards Dun Laoghaire. They are working on the pier but we had a nice walk near the see and through the People’s Park market. We got some outdoor stuff, like a kite and a basketball.

We really missed our neighbors back home as the day and the new stuff would have been even better if we had someone to share it with.




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