The Emerald Isle Night 2-4

075I woke up at a decent time. Showered, had breakfast, explored Cork long enough to get myself a pair of earings and Mckenna her jersey and then went up to Blarney. I parked a bit away,  but I enjoyed the walk. The sun came out for a bit even though the grounds were muddy. I wasn’t sure if there would be a queue to “kiss the stone” so that is where I bolted. No queue, and we actually had to ask another visitor nicely if she would press the button to take the picture of me kissing it. The stone is in a really random location, and you have to go backwards off the edge of the castle and kiss the stone upside down. I’ve now been blessed with the gift of gab. The castle is ancient, and narrow. Unsure how the hefty Winston Churchill made it up that staircase. I explored the castle and its surrounding grounds. I found a witches stone. Apparently she is released from the stone every night. There were a few other superstitious relics around the castle grounds. Something I’ve noticed about the Irish. They are superstitious. I noticed some people walking around with a black dot on their forehead. Oh! It was Ash Wednesday. After lunch in Blarney (where people were having pints, not me, I was driving) I made my way to Killarney. Once again about 1/2 hour before dark. I made dinner and then walked around the town a little bit. Checked out one pub, and then I found out they had a LOTR pub! It was called the Shire. I had to go there! I walked through the Hobbit door to find out I was the only one in the pub who didn’t know the bartender. There were only 3 people in the pub. I drank my Gandolf ale and left. I needed to be up early tomorrow anyway. I woke up bright and early and drove into the National Park. It was really pretty. My first stop was an old abandoned abbey surrounded by a graveyard. My second notice about Ireland is that its creepy. Its haunted. The roof of the abbey was gone, but there was a corrider that went down into the basement. I shined my cellphone light down there, and hell no. There was some sort of spirit down there waiting to posses my body and take over my life. In a roundabout way, I ended up down in the basement anyway. I sprinted through the corrider and up the stairs toward daylight. In case you’re wondering, I haven’t been posssed. I’m pretty positive. And youll see why later on in my trip. I went for a wee walk to the waterfall. I saw some Irish deer. They look weird. The waterfall was cool. Ireland is green. Very green. I decided to drive through the park a little bit more, and thats when I was blessed with the amazing views of the mountains and the lakes. The mountains aren’t very tall in ireland. But it adds variety besides rolling green hills. There are goats, and some mountain sheep. The sheep were in my way of a pictuesque shot and wouldn’t move. Darn sheep. I had a second road trip to comeplete that day, so it was time to leave Killarney and head to Dingle. After lunch I decided to conquer Slea Head Drive. One of the most scenic drives in all of Ireland. And was it. The cliffs aren’t as tall as the Cliffs of Moher (but that is what makes them special) but they were still divine. The sun was out for a bit, so I took proof that sun in Ireland does exist. I was really becoming an expert driver on the left hand side. We will see what happens when I go back to the US. I would probably pullover ever 2 kilometers or so. That might be an exaggeration, but a 35 km route took me 3 hours or so. I did go for a longer walk at the end though. The sites were memorizing. At one point I noticed a large herd of sheep coming at me. They were on the road. This road wasn’t big enough for the two of us. When they got closer I stopped my car so the sheep could go around. They were confused at first, but eventually figured it out. I could see the dog and the farmer behind them. Darn sheep. Always in my way. As I rounded the peninsula, (STAR WARS SPOILER AHEAD) I am pretty sure I saw Luke Skywalker’s island. I know it is off Dingle. Tiny island though. Not much else there except Luke. I went for a good 1/2 hour walk or so, to probably one of my faveorite views. I didn’t realaze Ireland had so much hiking. Killarney had tons, and so did Dingle. Good to know If I return in the summer. I returned to Dingle and checked into my room for the night. I got some dinner. That town was dead. It is purely a summer town. Have the shops were closed for the winter. But luckily I found a pub to serve me beer and food. I had another long day tomorrow. I was headed to Cliffs of Moher and then Galway. The drive to the Cliffs was fine. Long but fine. The Cliffs were breathtaking. I lucked out and got some sun towards the end of my visit. It was really muddy out there. My pants and shoes were fiflty. I laughed at all the girls walking through the mud in heels (just a small heel) or white canvas shoes. You can walk to the edge of the cliff. I couldn’t do it. I had visions that a gust of wind would come and blow me off the edge. No one would know I was missing, until I didn’t return to London in a few days time. The park would wonder why my car was left overnight. They would probably assume quickly that I fell off the edge. But to put two and two together for my family in England to find out that it was my car at the Cliffs and that I probably fell to my death, I thought that might take 5 days or so. I stayed away from the edge to play it safe. And I had heart attacks for the people who would stand on the edge or dangle there feet. I am now curious how many people have died at the Cliffs of Moher. That was my highlight for day 3 in Ireland. I drove to Galway which is probably my favorite city. The city center was cute. I loved the pubs and all the live music. I would of loved to spend more days there. But that was becoming a theme for my trip. As long as I get a different immigration lady, maybe one day I’ll go back. (Might be the only overseas place I can get David to go to anyway) 🙂 I had yet another long day tomorrow. I was driving to Northern Ireland near Belfast. That trip needs an entry of its own.

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