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Post Info TOPIC: Trip Report Part III


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Trip Report Part III


Here is Part III

Marie

We stayed with Mary and her husband, Tommy, for 3 days.  She took us into Dublin (via the LUAS the cabled train system) to see some of the sites and do some shopping.  We spent hours talking and reminiscing.  We met neighbors and friends and family who had heard we were coming and wanted to meet us.  It was wonderful.  It became apparent then that my daughters sorely needed to connect with some young people and have some fun.  Tommys nephew, Paul, a rugby player who is a dead ringer for Toby Keith, and some of his friends took the girls out to Temple Bar for some Dublin-style partying.  Well, they enjoyed it so much that they went out again the next night, too.  And THAT is how I came to miss my opportunity to visit Newgrange.  They were too tired to get up early enough to make the Mary Gibbons tour, and I did not want to go alone.  The good news is that now I have an excuse to go back.  And believe me, I will.  Dublin was a definite highlight of the trip.  After all, its the people that we will remember most of all.

We really liked Christ Church Cathedral, and thought the Book of Kells was overpriced and hard to see, as there were a lot of tourists there that day. We were in line for the Guinness Tour, but realized it would be a wait (lots of tourists), and the girls had to get ready to go out (takes hours, you know), so we left.  Needless to say, Dublin made a strong impression on my daughters, and they both say they would like to return.

 

We said our tearful goodbye and promised not to wait another 36 years to get together.  Then we were off to Kilkenny, via the Wicklow mountains.  What a gorgeous drive!  We visited Powerscourt.  We all loved the gardens.  I did not know Rhododendrons came in all those colors.  Keely and Kasey fantasized about it being their home and throwing a great party there.  We walked all through the gardens, ate lunch and left for Glendalough.

I stopped at a local Home Depot sort of place to ask for directions.  A customer heard me and offered to lead me there.  This was the first of 3 times that someone offered to take me to where I was going.  So nice and so much appreciated.Glendalough was really all I had expected it to be.  So serene and peaceful and beautiful.  I would like to return sometime, perhaps in off-season when there would be almost no one there.  Wow.

We finally got to Kilkenny, and I pulled over at the Castle to ask a taxi driver for directions to Alcantra.  He led us there.  Liam and Brigit were so gracious.  They were on their way out for the evening, and they turned their sitting room over to us, as the TV in our room had just broken recently.  Its great how trusting people can still be.  They just gave me the keys, and left us there in their beautiful home.  Keely had caught a cold along the way, and wasnt feeling too great.  Kasey and I went out to bring back dinner.  About 5 minutes walk, and there was McDonalds.  I know, its sort of cheating, but it was just the ticket for the girls, one of whom was homesick and the other who had a cold.  So we ate McD, watched Charmed on TV, and went to bed.  BTW, we could not get over the F word being allowed on Irish TV!  The next day we toured KilkennyCastle, went to the Kilkenny Design Centre, and walked through a bit of the town.  It really was lovely, but we did not see much of it, sadly. We had given up one of our days there by staying an extra day in Dublin. Next time.

 

The drive to Killarney was long.  We stopped at the Rock of Cashel (wonderful) and ate lunch at Grannys Kitchen.  We found Killarney Lodge with no problem, and spent some time wandering around the town and shopping.  The next day we took a Deros tour of the Gap of Dunloe.  It was during the jaunting car ride that Kasey began her conversation with Helen, and we realized that we were the IrelandYes! forum folks.  It was so nice talking with Helen.  Then we ate lunch at Lord Brandons cottage, where I took a walk and found a lone chicken burrowing herself in a bowl of dust.  Our boat ride over the lakes was great, windy and cold.  When I told the captain that we are from an area where two rivers meet (Shenandoah and Potomac) at Harpers Ferry, he actually knew what I was talking about, and said he loves the song, Oh, Shenandoah.  We returned to town, and had dinner at Hannigans and I highly recommend it. 

 

Dingle was easy to get to, and a beautiful drive.  It rained all day the first day, so we went to the aquarium and to the shops and on to Murphys to meet up with the group from the forum.  Helen was there, but there was no indication of anyone else.  The place was crowded, and we needed to eat something, so we told Helen we would go and eat and return.  We did that, but she was gone when we got there, and the waitress said she was not approached by anyone who was supposed to meet up with a group.  So, that was a bust.  Saturday was beautiful, and we went horse-back riding at Longs. They were very nice and I would recommend them without hesitation.  Our guide was a girl from Hungary, Ana Maria.  She said she loved being in Ireland.  I fell pretty hard for Tom, my horse, but sadly, I had to leave him.  We returned to the B & B, which was the Tower View.  It was very nice.  They have a pet sheep (ram) worthy of mention.  His name is Harry, and he has 4 horns 2 curved ones (as you would expect) and then 2 that go out from his head like a giant V about 2 ½ feet long!  He was pretty amazing looking.  We fed him his favorite food:  toast.  Kasey loved him.  After a shower and a rest, we went out to the Slea Head Drive, stopped at some of the scenic overlooks and saw some beehive huts and ended at the Blasket Centre.  The views were extraordinary, and the film was very moving.  We drove back to the Tower View and organized our suitcases for the flight home.  Tomorrow would be our last day in Ireland. 

 

The drive to Bunratty was really easy, though somewhat long.  We did not go over the ConnorPass.  It rained on and off.  We found Bunratty Lodge easily, and then went back to see the castle.  Keely and Kasey were pretty tired, and were not too enthusiastic at first, but when we got inside the castle, they loved it!  We walked around the entire FolkPark and went back to Bunratty Lodge to get ready for our Ceili in the Corn Barn.  It started at 7pm, and it was a wonderful, entertaining evening, a perfect end to our trip. 

 

Our flight was for 11:00AM.  We turned the rental car in, and the man who checked it over took us to the terminal.  He was driving like a madman, and when he put on the brakes and turned a corner, all our luggage went flying out into the road!  We were pretty upset and worried about the breakable gifts we had.  There was no apology.  I dont think he likes his job very much.  We checked everything once we got inside, and nothing was broken.  After check-in, we shopped at the Duty Free shop. The flight home was uneventful.  I sat next to a really nice couple from Pennsylvania and chatted with them between naps.  The service on the flight home was better than the flight to Ireland.  I spent a fair amount of time thinking of making plans to go back. 

 

 

 

 



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Marie


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All I can say, Marie, is............Wonderful!!!

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Now that I've read all three,

!BRAVO!    !BRAVO!    !BRAVO!

(Would LOVE to see pix!)

A Hop-On / Hop-Off Tour Guide told me:

If you come to Ireland once,
You will WANT to return.

If you come to Ireland twice,
You WILL return again.

If you come to Ireland three times,
You'll want to live there.

Worked for me.... biggrin biggrin

Bob

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Help Us to Help You.  The more you tell us about your plans (dates, interests, budget), the better we can tailor our advice to suit!



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Marie, almost as good as reading over my old trip journals! Thanks so much for sharing. Can we expect pictures? Not greedy, or anything...

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Slán go fóill, Judy


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Marie,

Any pics of Harry the unique ram? It sounds like he has way to many horns! What a lovely journey with many surprises along the way. Sorry to hear that the meet up at Murphy's was a bust but how wonderful to meet Helen at the Gap of Dunloe.

You saw a lot, enjoyed time with your daughters, met up with an old friend and strolled your ancestral ground. It seems almost perfect to me.

Michele

-- Edited by Michele Erdvig at 01:49, 2007-06-04

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"Ireland Expert"  Michele Erdvig

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Wonderful trip report, Marie -- thanks so much for sharing! You have made memories with your daughters that I'm sure they will always treasure. And what a special way to reunite with a friend.

And congrats on climbing Croagh Patrick.  I only took pictures of it aww

-- Edited by shashie50 at 02:09, 2007-06-04

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Marsha


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great trip report!  This time in 2 weeks I will be in Ireland! 

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Marie- Where are your pictures?? Would love to see them- I still have not had a chance to figure out my own- I have not even really unpacked. Please email the link or let me know where to find... Thanks
April email april@aprilart.com


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Hi, April:

Sorry we did not get to meet in Dingle!  I have sent the invitation along to you.
It will come from MyPhotoAlbum.com.  Hope your trip was great!
Mariesmile.gif

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Marie


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aprilmay,

I just looked at your website. Wonderful photos! I hope you will be doing an Ireland collection now? On my links page I have links to forum members websites. Do you want me to add yours?

Michele

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Great repot! Goodness, you covered a lot of territory! Thanks for taking the time to share.

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Hi Marie,

I just finished looking at all of your pictures. Even though I just got back last week, I'm ready to go again after seeing your wonderful pictures.

Thanks for sharing.

Ande

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Hi Marie,

Where does the time go?  After a busy 3 weeks since we got back home, I finally had to take the time to read your trip report.  I still can't believe you actually climbed Croagh Patrick! You have my utmost admiration!  We have only been as far as St. Patrick, and I just can't imagine the determination that took you to the top.  My hat's off to you.

It was fun (and crazy) to meet up with you in the Gap of Dunloe.  The key words were that the three of you were staying at Tower BandB. It all clicked.  We did wait around Murphy's for a short while after you all left, then headed back over Connor Pass (We did the Pass 4 times in 2 days!) to The Shores.  If any IrelandYes buddies ever plan to meet in Dingle, I would suggest a pub off the beaten path, for everyone walking on the main street seemed to stop at Murphy's.

Great report, hopefully I shall get mine started soon, it's been a busy family time since we got back--Daughter-in-law with medical emergencies (Breast Cancer), myself with a bad cold and jet-lag.

Are you planning your next Ireland sojourn yet?

Helen

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Helen Leary Olson



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Hi, Helen:

I am so glad you enjoyed your month in Ireland.  And I am sorry we did not get to meet up with the others, but sure am glad I met you!  :)  I wish your daughter-in-law renewed health. 

Looking forward to the report. 

I will begin planning the next trip over as soon as I can see the light at the end of the credit card tunnel!hmm.gif  Ironic that I saved $9,000.00 for the trip, (and spent every cent, I am proud to say), only to return home and shell out 4,000.00 in repairs to Kasey's car.  Yikes!

Luckily, I won't need as much money next trip because:

A -  I am not taking the girls.
B -  I have reunited with my friend in Dublin, and will spend most of the time with her.
C - It turns out I might have found family in Donegal, so there's lodging on both coasts!wink.gif

Take care,

Marie

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Marie


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Helen,

I am wishing your daughter-in-law the best. I hope she caught it early. Breast cancer is something that has greatly affected my family too.

Marie,

Planning another trip again already! It can never be soon enough. I am delighted that you now have family and friends to visit in Ireland. You might just have to become a regular.

Michele

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Marie,

I've read your report twice because I enjoyed it so much and it looks as if I didn't tell you.

Thank you !!!! Joan

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