Melissa, I love your writing style! I feel like I was tagging along with you.
I've been so sorry to hear the reports about the new visitor's center at the Cliffs of Moher. Glad I got to visit once without all that fuss--and the additional expense...
You can find lots of mead recipes online. I'm a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), a big sort of "club" that studies and recreates various aspects of the Middle Ages. There are lots of folks who make mead and they're happy to share their recipes. One of my best friends in the group makes a "quick and dirty" type of mead...she refers to the "vintage" as "last Tuesday was a very good year."
Thanks for mentioning the banquet at Dunguaire. We may try that one on the next visit. Just please, tell me that they *didn't* sing "Danny Boy" for you. My niece stepped on my foot at the Bunratty banquet to keep me from fussing out loud at that one. (My issues: it's *not* medieval, for starters, and it's not even all that Irish! I know they do it for the American tourists, but not *all* of us expect to hear it, honest!) I did enjoy the banquet at Bunratty, but it felt "crowded" to me. I also fussed over the lack of spoons, which they did indeed have and use throughout the Middle Ages. After not allowing us to use spoons for our soup, they brought spoons out with the dessert--ice cream, which was *not* known in the Middle Ages. I have to take a deep breath when I go to that sort of place and remind myself that most of them are trying to recreate "Camelot," not the authentic Middle Ages. Which is okay, after all.
Thought I would share a quick story with you.
A co-worker had just returned from a 2 week trip to Ireland, and was sharing his experience of touring the Cliff's of Moher. After enjoying his story, I started to walk away,stopped and I yelled back " How did you like the construction of the visitor's center ?" Boy, the look on his face was priceless!
He just muttered "How in the world did you know about that ?" I just smiled, and said " I have my ways! " He was pretty impressed that I had known about that. We had serveral other conversations about his trip. One was about the advice he was given about not being able to use is debit card in Ireland.
I just told him he should have talked to me earlier. LOL !
So far you are enjoying every part of Ireland. How will you ever decide where to go on your next trip? You will want to visit some of the same places (like the Cliffs of Moher to see the new visitor's center) and some new ones like the Rock of Cashel.
I think that sign must have been wrong at the cliffs. The website says that about one million people visit it every year.
My recipe for mead: Open bottle, pour into wine glass, sip till gone and you start feeling mellow. Enjoy!
"Ireland Expert" Michele ErdvigClick links for Michele's Book or Custom Ireland ItineraryVisit Michele's Irish Shop for unique Irish gifts and beautiful photos of Ireland.
Just a thought for your next trip. Have you thought of staying in self-catering places for a week at a time? This might be just your speed and style. In the off-season self-catering can be available for mid-week and weekend rentals.
As for wild places: Co. Donegal, Achill Island, Connemara, Beara Peninsula, parts of west Cork, Belmullet Peninsula (bet you won't see tourists there).
You're right; at self-catering places you make your own breakfast. Looks like staying put in some nice B&Bs or guesthouses might suit you better. Belmullet Peninsula is in Co. Mayo.
I like being spoiled on vacation too!
Yes, in the Gaslamp on 5th, across from Mooses about 4 blocks up from Harbor Blvd. I really like their Seafood Boxty. They also have the Irish breakfasts and stuff.