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...a glimpse into life on Vancouver Island, needle felting, photography, food, gardening, etcetera...etcetera
"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Oh so Merry Ploughboy!

Well, as I said, I had left my extra battery and charger in Dingle and wouldn't see it again until back in Canada so our last few days in Dublin are luckily burned in my memory...Stayed a night in Cork at a lovely b&b on the river Lee. It got me to thinking how a lot of these towns are built on waterways and how life revolved around them for centuries before highways and cars came into being....It would be cool to time travel and see how life was 300 years ago in some of these places...We strolled around Cork with its modern Grand Mall and twisted old streets. We found a sleek modern bistro and decided to have some dinner there...really yummy pasta and a few good glasses of wine for me and Guinness for the Da. Luckily the b&b had a big  bathtub for me to soak in after all that driving from Dingle!Took the rental car back safe and sound the next morning and hopped the train for Dublin.Did I mention how much we loved the train travel? So relaxing and a great place to people watch...sat with these really crazy, dreadhead hippies from Poland with their beautiful daughter who was practicing her Irish language skills by reading all the signs aloud.
It was good to be back in Dublin and to see Aja and Robert and spent a few days in the city centre one last time to do some shopping with Aja...our second to last night there they decided to take us out for a farewell dinner up in the hills of Balleycullen at one of Irelands oldest pubs, The Merry Ploughboy.
When I say up in the hills I mean really up there...our taxi took about 20 minutes through twisting, winding, rock walled lined narrow roads to what seemed like the end of the road. And there it was...this pretty old pub/ eatery with the walls and shelves filled with antiques, old posters of the IRA, photos and general old stuff everywhere...We ordered up our pints and food and soon were served up with incredible plates of Wicklow lamb, salmon and fresh local veggies heaped on plates. We sat enjoying our dinner, then dessert then more pints and more pints kept coming...upstairs there was a private show going on for a bus tour where a traditional Irish band was playing so we had a peak in on that and came back down for another pint...before we realized it, the restaraunt had closed and we were the only patrons left...the band had come down to sit at the bar and brought a guitar with them and began to sing a few songs...Aja and I got brave enough to go up and request a song...well the pints kept flowing and Robert and Dad joined in and what can I say except it was the perfect end to the perfect trip....the next morning....Not so Merry...spent the day nursing a BIG Guinness hangover and laughing at the crumpled up bill from OUR share of the night...17 pints...and that was an hour before we left! Anyway much fun was had by all....As for the 29 hour trip home...what can I say..aside from almost missing our connection in Amsterdam, it went pretty smooth with views of Greenland gracing our windows.

It was a lifetime dream come true and it wouldn't have been a fraction of the fun and amazement if it weren't for my most excellent travel companion, my Dad. We were able to see so much and experience so much more than I could have be able to dig up our roots and to meet the people who shadow our family hear the beautiful voices of the most friendly people I've met will be imprinted on us forever...

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