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Saturday in Donegal by Ann Treacy
November 4, 2007, 6:41 pm
Filed under: Donegal, Dublin

We had another wonderful breakfast in Donegal. (We stayed at The Arches by the way, which we highly recommend.)

We wanted to take a boat tour of Donegal Bay but sadly the water was out so the tour was happening in the afternoon and we couldn’t wait. So we took off for Bundoran – a really nice seaside town. The weather was perfect. We walked along the beach. The girls found a ton of cool shells and the boys kicked the soccer ball a lot.

We saw some surfers – yup people surf off the coast in Ireland. In fact it’s pretty popular.

After a while we started on our way back to Dublin. We drove straight through the country rather than the long route we took to get to Donegal. We planned to have lunch in Cavan but we didn’t see a restaurant so we headed to Virgina. We had a really nice lunch there at a hotel on Lake Erne.

We finally got into town about 4:30 – just in time to have a little rest and get ready for a big family dinner at a fancy restaurant in town at night. All of us (6 kids, 8 adults) ate at a restaurant called 66. The food was great and everyone had a very nice time. The restaurant was very patient as the first of our party arrived at 6:30 and the last closer to 8:00.

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Friday in Donegal by Ann Treacy
November 4, 2007, 5:57 pm
Filed under: Donegal

Friday I woke, got out my computer and it didn’t work. It wouldn’t start at all. Maybe it was the 7-up that Patrick opened on it yesterday.

We sat down to a very yummy breakfast – including great Irish bacon. Then I started off towards Donegal Town to get my computer fixed. It’s 3-5 miles from the Bed & Breakfast. Patrick did not feel bad at all about breaking my computer so I left him at home.

Luckily I was able to find a computer fixit place and they were able to fix the computer for me. I found a WIFI network and was able to catch up with work. Then I realized that I had to idea where everyone might be – but I figured O’Donnell Castle in Donegal would be a good guess. SO I met up with them there.

We walked around the town a bit. It’s a nice town. We saw an art exhibit by Edel Gallagher. Then we drove off to Killybegs, a fishing town not too far from Donegal Town. The funny thing was that it was very hard to find fresh fish for lunch in the fishing town. Both of the hotels in town seemed to feature meat. We ended up at Fish & Chip type place but it was good.

Then we headed off on another drive. Neither Patrick nor Michael was very specific about where we were going. So we ended up in the car for about 2 hours until it got dark and started to rain – then we found ourselves in Burtonport, where apparently their great grandmother (or someone) is from. The best this about this side excursion is that I will never have to go to Burtonport again. (When we got home Patrick’s mom’s first question is whether we visited someone she knew at the pub there. Of course e hadn’t – that visit might have picked up the trip considerably!)

We headed back to Donegal. Unfortunately we ran into the same problem as the night before – restaurants were started to close despite it meaning 7:00 on a Friday night. We did find a great place – a casual café sort of thing that actually had a computer with WIFI – so the kids all took a turn going online.

Finally we ended the night in the pub. Where the grownups had exactly one pint each because the kids were complaining the whole time.

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Round Ireland with the Kids (Thursday) by Ann Treacy
November 4, 2007, 9:02 am
Filed under: Donegal

We got up super early today. I had my shower before 6:30. We squeezed 8 people into a 7-seat van and set off for the endless road trip. Michael (Patrick’s brother) rented the van and we were traveling with him, Killian and Aidan.

Our first stop was Nenah in County Tipperary, not too far from Thurles. We saw the former chief friary of Ireland; it’s pretty much in ruins. We had lunch at a place called Roots – which I highly recommend. It was 10:30 in the morning and the owner/chef came out to tell us what kind of fruit she had (for a special order) and said that if Aine really wanted spaghetti, she could make it. (Luckily the fruit sounded good too.)

At about 12:30 we started off for Ennis – a 45 minute drive. At 2:30 we finally arrived in Ennis. The purpose of this trip was to visit Patrick’s Aunt Sister Celine. We met Patrick’s mom, brother Shay, brother Eamonn and wife (Erin) and son (Mikey) in Ennis. They had wisely taken the train. They arrived on time at 1:30.

The other purpose of the trip was to go to Donegal – a plan that Patrick pushed heavily by saying that Donegal is a straight shot from Ennis. Straight does not mean short. After 3+ hours of driving in the morning, we got into the car at 5:00 for 4 more hours of driving.

We drove past Galway and had dinner in Sligo. We drove by tons of historical and literary markers – Sligo is WB Yeats territory – but it was dark so we didn’t see much. We arrived at 9:00 for dinner. Sadly most of the restaurants seem to close at about 9:00.

So we ended up – all 8 of us at an Indian restaurant. Actually it was very good and we all liked it – but it was a little slower and fancier than we needed.

Right before midnight we cruised into the Bed & Breakfast.

Here’s a  if you want to track our travels. We went from Dublin to Clare to Sligo to Donegal.

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(You may notice that Patrick spilled on his shirt. He opened a 7 up that exploded. Unfortunately he opened it up right over my laptop! This info may seem gratuitous today – but it comes into play tomorrow.)




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