Sunday, February 14, 2016

Luck of the Irish, eh?

Being friendly has its perks....or maybe it has something to do with being an American girl who doesn't quite look like an American girl in a foreign country? ...or it's the septum ring. Okay, multiple layers/factors... Or, I'm just a bright-eyed girl who somehow always manages to make friendlies with people, especially the English!

Met a few lovely English lads in a crowded bar when there was nowhere else to sit. I've missed European pubs! Live music and people out for a good camaraderie, not to get into girls' knickers {okay, maybe there's a little of that, but it's more subtle and I never felt any of that nonsensical vibe}.

Getting ahead of meself, though. oi.

Early morning start with a quick, brisk walk down to the bus station, yummy Bueno bar tucked readily within reach in my bag for a light brekkie, my belly all wobbly from excitement and anticipation for the day.

Our tour guide was great, complete with commentary and a rad Irish accent! He filled in the void with witty stories and random facts about Ireland - not your typical tour guide! First stop after about a 2hr drive {and a brief pit stop for noms, Monster, & loo break}, was the Rock of Cashel, from which I nabbed a small pebble just for Teets! A beautifully constructed stone structure, it was abandoned after upkeep became too expensive & out of control....the priests left its cold walls for warmer confines and the ruins remain.

We walked about the ruins for a bit, taking advantage of the free toilets available as one does... Travel tip: use free loos whenever possible.

Then it was off to Blarney Castle! It was about a 15-minute drive from Cork city, but dang, it was mighty purdy. The castle sets upon a great hill so one can't miss it. Aside from that {of course, the main agenda for everyone was placing their plump lips upon that stone}, there were caves and waterfalls and walkways to explore. Wishing the rain would have held up a tad, but that deterred no one.

The walk up the castle is not for the feint of heart, practically climbing up the tight, spindly spiral staircase with not but a thick rope upon which to hold. I have tiny feet {US 6, UK 36}, but even so, if my blood wasn't flowing from exhilaration and excitement, I may have been a bit afraid of falling down upon the nice German lady following behind me.

Walking around was the only way to keep warm {as well as explore} and sooo, I did! In Cork city, I met a lovely Finnish girl named Jenni who was also on the tour and we walked around to find a late lunch, which was, of course, good ol' fish & chips at Thomond Bar as she had not yet experienced this wonderful tradition {sadly, not haggis on the island to be found}.

Mushy peas are the worst...
Afterwards, we ventured back to the lovely city of Dublin where I settled in at the hostel, attempted to FaceTime with a superhero, and made my way down to River Bar, where I was merry with my new English mates and danced with the locals. Live music and crazy dancing - yasss.

Tried some tasty beers, one in particular: Galway Hooker. When in Rome Dublin, eh?

Feet aching and a shit-grin on my face, I'm ready for what tomorrow shall bring!

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