One thing we've determined in our adventures around Ireland that you should always plan at least three things to do because only two of them will actually work out.
In the case of when Cara was here we planned on Cliffs of Mohor, Poulnabrone, and Bunratty castle. In that case only the cliffs actually worked out.
This time we're planning another big trip up to Northern Ireland to see Dunluce Castle, Giant's Causeway, the Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge, and then Belfast for a sweets stop at Aunt Sandra's. Perhaps one of our most aggressively planned day trips--especially considering travel times. And after all, at least one thing can't work out, right?
Not only did everything work out, nearly everything was free or discounted! And unlike last time where we were afflicted with blasting rain, fences, and stinging nettle, this trip provided us an affliction-free adventure.
(I'm going to post this blog entry even though it's unfinished because I want to get the photos out; Liz also has a bunch on her Facebook feed. Commentary to come!)
Sunday, 23 February 2014
So, the big news lately is my sister-in-law Cara Vance, the much-better half of my older brother and their daughter Savannah have come out to Ireland for a visit! While we are always super excited to have family visitors, the deal is sweetened because Savannah is staying longer to be our
personal house cleaner very special guest for a whole month!
Of course no such visit would be complete without the epic tours of Ireland. I have to give credit to Liz for spearheading the great trips around Dublin and beyond, despite our wonder van (lovingly referred to as The Tank) being virtually inoperable.
Saturyday (Feb 22, 2014) to ensure we could see at least one big item and not have to worry about roadside assistance, I rented a car and drove them and Gabe out to the Cliffs of Mohor, one of my personal favorites in Ireland.
Still an amazing view!
While the weather wasn't very cooperative, it wasn't too foggy or too rainy to limit the spectacular view of the sheer coastline.
And while I'm here, this time I may as well do some photo-oping for the Alma Mater!
Super Gabe was a trooper the whole trip!
Pictures just don't do it justice; just a breath taking place!
Cara showing off her latest line of chic anti-wind/rain headgear; fashion meets function!
A lone sea stack teeters precariously above the raging surf
After ooing and awwing over the cliffs for a couple hours we tried to take in an authentic castle (that wasn't in ruins). Unfortunately, because of the aforementioned difficulties in securing reliable trans-Ireland transportation, we got a rather late start for the day and by the time we got to Bunratty Castle, it had closed for the day. We did manage to get a few good shots of its outside; oh well, we'll just have to come back next time!
Now it was time to try and find someplace to eat. Luckily for us, right next door to Bunratty is Durty Nelly Restaurant and Pub. I was expecting overpriced touristy Irish kitsch, and I wasn't disappointed, but what did surprise me was how good it was!!
We MUST get our pictures in a real Irish pub with an Irish 6-Nation Rugby match in the background!
The perfect shot!
Cara & Savannah about to indulge on a lemon crepe. Yum!
Our van is breaking down, suddenly stops at highly inconvenient times, or won't even start at all. Today (Sunday) while trying to start it for church the battery ran down. Luckily for us, roadside assistance came to the rescue. Hopefully it can last us till we can get in in the shop and get it repaired (soonest appointment is one week!!)
I had to take the rental car back to the airport, and Aaron insisted I take a picture of this art piece in the terminal
While here, Savannah received her mission call to Eugene Oregon! All I can say is GO HUSKIES!!!
The daffodils are starting to push through. The vanguard of spring is on its way!
Mr. Aaron doing his "Nice" smile for me at St. Anne's park
Happened upon this fine Irish gentleman who happened to pick the WRONG shirt when he last visited Seattle. Luckily I was able to inform him about the RIGHT shirt to buy next time.
Some of my latest activities include building scale models. Seems like it should be easy enough?
Well, it's finished and while it could have turned out better, still not too bad for a first time! I had David's help so it turned out pretty good.
Just a couple cute kiddies! I'm glad someone in the family likes marshmallow; yick!