Hello all! My apologies for not getting a post out sooner but I have limited access, and believe it or not limited interest, in the internet; after all I am on vacation. This is day 9 on my journey and I have pretty much concluded my stay in Ireland as I fly to Berlin Tuesday Morning. Right now I am in historic Derry at Paddy’s Palace youth hostel which is part of a chain spanning the country themed with goofy decor and green and orange EVERYTHING. Even the outside of the building! Derry is a cool town, a lot of interesting and unsettling history happened here and is actually still happening with regard to “The Troubles” of northern Ireland. I toured this historic Walled City with an animated character who takes pride in his city and as a retired postal worker takes much enjoyment in telling the chilling tales of this historic city. Northern Ireland is strange, it seems a lot like the rest or Ireland only strangely British. I walked the Bogside and saw all the famous murals representing the people’s struggles and spoke with the artists who painted them and tour the world telling the story of “Free Derry”.
Here is a picture of one of the more famous murrells.
I could go on forever, lets start at the beginning…
Reader’s Digest Version:
- I have been in Ireland for almost 10 days and it has rained once for a period of about two hours, other than that, sun and 70 degrees. Can ya stand it!?!?
- Exchange rates suck! Especially the pound, especially since Ireland is particularly expensive and especially since the Guinness is so damn good.
- I was in Dublin for 3 and 1/2 days of sightseeing; Guinness Storehouse, Jameson Distillery (where I became an official whiskey taster), the Library at the Book of Kells in Trinity College, and I had a drink at a bar built in 1198.
- I went to cork and mingled with the locals in a college bar on trivia night, I rocked the Family Guy section. I also toured the Blarney Castle and kissed the Blarney Stone and I now how have been given the gift of eloquence!
- Off to Galway, the cultural laid-back center of Ireland, basically an Irish Burlington, VT; complete with a cobblestone pedestrian mall, interesting statues, street performers, a booming music scene and an all around “vibe” I have trouble describing.
- I saw the Cliffs of Moher, and tried to hop the security barrier to get closer to the edge and take pictures (not as stupid/daring as it sounds) and got a whistle blown on me! So of course I sought out another route. After hiking the southern end of the boardwalk I joined a large group of fellow curious photographers in a quick dance around the “No Trespassing Sign” a trail which was rather worn. I found a great view of the cliffs right from the edge of them.
- The next day I found myself at Inis More, the largest of the Aran Islands. I saw some more cliffs and curious locals via bicycle rental. This place reminded me of an Irish Nantucket; the Irish part coming in with the entire island being covered in field stone walls, limestone fields, wind, usually rain(not when I was there), spiteful locals, a pub to restaurant ratio of 6:1 and an abundance of the color green. This was absolutely beautiful.
So that was Ireland, I have way more to tell and I’m sure I will when I get home. Thanks for reading. I leave you with one picture (of the 600 I have taken already).