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  • Day18

    Cobh

    September 5, 2015 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

    At 8:47 am shot of MacCroom Castle, birthplace of Sir William Penn, father of the founder of Pennsylvania. It is also the castle from which Michael Collins left on the day of his assassination by anti-treaty IRA forces. On the way I photographed a Celtic cross marking one of the famine graveyards. In the morning we visited Blarney Castle. Some went to kiss the Blarney Stone, but Glenda and enjoyed walking along the river walk then the woodland walk at the castle. We arrived in Cobh and lunched at the White Star Bar, in the building that housed the White Star Lines office. Then Glenda and I walked to the quayside where the Royal Princess brought us just four months past. We went to "the Titanic Experience." We drove to Dooley's Hotel in Waterford, arriving at 5:00 pm. Two other tour coaches had just arrived and the lobby looked like a circus. We will have the walking tour at 6:00 pm, and dinner here in the hotel at 7:30 pm. David told us of one Thomas Francis Meagher (pronounced Mahr) who fought in Waterford's rebellion in the 1840's, designed the Irish tricolor, was arrested and sent to Tasmania, made his way to California, then to New York, became Chief of Police, organized a unit that fought for the Union in the Civil War, became Governor of Montana, and was later presented to Queen Victoria as one of her former prisoners. The Queen was not amused. Before supper guide Jack led us on a walking tour of Waterford. It is a Viking town with one building, Reginald's tower going back to the year 1002. It is the oldest building in continuous use in Britain. There is a replica of a Viking vessel there. A shopping center downtown is built upon the site of a Viking village that was extensively excavated before construction resumed. We also saw the ruins of the Dominican monastery. The Catholic Church here is the oldest in Ireland, built in 1798. The English King and the Pope, who had been enemies since Henry VIII suddenly discovered that the French Revolution posed a common threat, and they became allies against it. The King thereafter allowed Catholic churches to be built. Good conversation at supper with Lance and Jerry about the pervasive intrusion of government into the private lives of citizens. We all agreed that there is no longer any privacy for anyone in a developed nation. Incidentally, as I was writing these travel notes tonight I realized that today marks my fiftieth anniversary as a Christian. I made a sincere profession of faith at Northside Baptist Church on September 5, 1965, the day before I started school at Harding High in Charlotte.Read more