River Corrib

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    • Day 79

      CÚIG GHRIANGHRAF-Ireland Day 14

      July 1, 2022 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

      It was a bit of a bleak, wet "Julianurary" day today. Seriously, the day was mostly reminiscent of winter in the Pacific NW. Fittingly, we learned that there is a marker pointing to Seattle and a similar one pointing to Galway from Seattle as both cities are on the same latitude line, sister cities aligned with wet rusting season.

      Most of the day served as a good time to read and relax in the boat's cabin like we normally would do back home. After several years in Washington and Oregon, we've learned to embrace the dark, wet days as settling in days,

      We did go to lunch at a nearby Chinese restaurant, and we could see the chef making fresh noodles as we chose comfort foods. After lunch, we stopped by a few shops, and then we returned to the Popcorn Polaris to shed our damp clothes, and to enjoy the heated cabin.

      We noticed a break in the weather mid-evening, and we thought it would be a good opportunity to check out the music scene at one of the pubs. Before heading to the pub, we split a paella dish, and then we went to the Crane Pub. It turns out that the upstairs music space was standing room only so we decided to grab a pint and join other patrons below.

      One of the things I enjoy about the pubs are the walls lined with photos of performers and posters recalling the top performers of the day. It reminds me of our walls at home lined with photos capturing event points of our family history.

      We left Crane Pub, and we walked down streets in the area. Some were peacefully quiet and others felt like aspects of Bourbon Street in New Orleans.

      Galway is a cute seaside town, and it's clearly designed to draw tourists. It does so successfully, but we're finding that we would eagerly trade it for a walk in the Burrens or a shared meal with newly found friends and hosts in County Laois (thank you again, Markie & Eamon).

      We close the night with gratitude knowing that very dear friends, Ace & Argus were married in Montana yesterday. We first met them in Seattle so the Galway marker pointing to Seattle also reminds us that chosen family matters.

      Given events in the U.S. they decided not to wait to get married, and we wish them the best in their life together. May they have many happy years, and a government that recognizes their marriage as legitimate and due of all the privileges of straight couples.

      Love Wins! ❤️
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    • Day 78

      CÚIG GHRIANGHRAF-Ireland Day 13

      June 30, 2022 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

      We had a very good night sleeping on the MVP Popcorn Polaris. We learned that our boat was originally a fishing vessel about four decades ago. Ultimately it was a working boat and was neglected and sunk. It was resurfaced and transformed into a floating lodging space. The popcorn reference is to the red and white striped canopy over the deck which is reminiscent of a carnival popcorn stand.

      The day began with blue skies although the clouds quickly moved in. Jim C made a cappuccino run, and we enjoyed breakfast on the covered deck of the boat.

      We enjoyed a fairly lazy morning and then eventually wandered into the village for lunch. Our plan for the day was to end up in the village of Doolin which is located about an hour south of Galway and is renowned for its music scene.

      Given that most music venues don't get rolling until 8 or 9 pm, we decided to first head out to Burren National Park. The word “Burren” comes from an Irish word “Boíreann” meaning a rocky place. This area is known for its lack of topsoil and limestone outcroppings, yet the area is lush with wildflowers. We enjoyed our walk along one of the trails through woodlands, meadows and bogs. Burren exemplifies resilience and thriving despite conditions that don't support that outcome. Upon reflection, it seems fitting that my maternal grandmother's family was from Ireland. She remains one of the most vibrant and resilient persons who I have ever known.

      After the walk we headed toward Doolin. Given that it was only about 6 pm, we decided to explore a nearby cave known for holding a massive stalactite. As we approached the road leading to the entrance we saw a man in apparent distress. We learned that he had overcorrected to avoid a passing car on the narrow road and he ran over a sharp rock that punctured two tires. He was traveling with two younger men, and they were worried about getting assistance because they had no cell signal.

      We offered to give them a ride back to Doolin, and we learned that the father and two adult sons from Holland who were enroute to Galway after visiting the Cliffs of Moher.

      We returned to Doolin and stopped by a nearby Pub where they had a phone signal. They had no answer from the rental car company, and we told them that we would stay until they had a tenable solution. I told a server at the pub about the problem, and she had contact information about a man nearby who repairs tires. We grabbed a drink and chowder and invited the men to join us.

      We exchanged stories, and learned that they has come to Ireland to attend a Red Hot Chili Peppers Concert in Dublin, and they had decided to explore Ireland. We talked about favorire music groups and we discovered a shared love for Lucinda Williams. I didn't bring up "Car Wheels on a Gravel Road". Too soon. 🤣

      One of the sons had played lead guitar with Up With People. He had had erformed in Wyoming and Colorado. We talked about politics and once again we heard "What happened to America?" as they described their own frustrations back home. I learned that the father was planning to retire in six months, and I talked about the newly learned joys of retirement.

      After a few hours had passed, the tires were repaired and we let our new found acquaintances know that we treated them for dinner and drinks as we said goodbye. We told them that hopefully we had eased the burden of the day for them, and if we saw them in Galway tomorrow they could buy us a beer.

      We never did make it to a music venue, but I wouldn't have traded the experience for anything.

      I believe the Universe rewarded us with a spectacular sunset this evening and we are headed to bed with gratitude for this fine adventure.

      I learned from my brother that our niece gave birth to a son today. Welcome to the world, Jaxson Wren Banner.

      Good night
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    • Day 77

      CÚIG GHRIANGHRAF-Ireland Day 12

      June 29, 2022 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

      We launched the day by joining our Limerick acquaintance Jay at a nearby breakfast restaurant known for its soda bread offerings. Breakfast was great, and we enjoyed further conversation before saying our good-byes.

      Today we ventured to our next stop in the coastal city of Galway. We noticed right away that the area has more wealth and it's clearly a draw for tourists. We chose to stay on the Popcorn Polaris, a quirky, but cozy space on a boat moored next to the Latin quarter. It was a bit windy this afternoon, and the boat rocks a bit, but it's comforting and quiet.

      After resting a bit, we explored the streets in the area. We dropped by a local gay bar for a beer. We were the only patrons while we were there, but we enjoyed a nice conversation with the bartender who is studying physics in college.

      Most of the locals are preoccupied with the inclement weather that has launched summer. I think our years in the Pacific NW has taught us to celebrate sun when it shows up and to find the peace and settling time of the rain. I prefer walking around on cool days so I'm good with the weather.

      We chose a tapas restaurant for dinner. The food was fine overall, but certainly not comparable to the tapas we enjoyed in Barcelona. We had a number of small plates, and we finished with a chocolate lava cake garnished with kumquats and raspberries. I ordered a latte which tasted fine, but looked like something that was produced by a broken convenience store machine. While my comments are sparky, I don't want to take away from the gracious, friendly service without exception. Ireland's people are just delightful.

      We left the restaurant and walked the streets while enjoying the buskers, the energy of the people strolling, and the sounds of pub patrons singing along with musicians.

      We stopped by a bench statue of Oscar Wilde and Estonian author Eduard Vilde. It was a cool likeness, and I took a pic of Jim C with Oscar. Every time I think of Oscar Wilde, I smile at his wicked wit, and I'm saddened by the persecution that he experienced. It appears that some would like to return to those times.

      We ended our walk with a stroll through a park dedicated to JFK. He was the first U.S. president to give a speech there. He delivered the speech 59 years ago today, just months before he was assassinated. JFK was the first President who I remember. He died when I was five years old. While we certainly know that he had plenty of flaws that were revealed in subsequent years, I do think our country would benefit from a youthful president again soon, preferably a woman. Old men have had enough turns in the role.

      We have settled in our cabin on the boat. Jim C is already drifting to sleep. We are both growing more excited about our return home, but I know that we will still squeeze in a few more adventures before doing so.

      "Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
      Oscar Wilde
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    • Day 17


      June 6, 2022 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 15 °C

      Unsere vorletzte Station ist Galway. Mit ihren wunderschönen Parks, den vielen Gemälden und der schönen Bay lädt sie ein zum Erkunden und verweilen ein.
      Wir schlendern durch die verwinkelten Gassen, lassen uns von der Musik, welche man überall in den Strassen hört treiben. Im Fluss Corrib der mitten durch die Stadt führt stehen Angler, wir beobachten sie und sehen wie Lachse versuchen eine Flussleiter hinauf zu springen.
      Wo man hinschaut sieht man Wandbilder und Strassenkünstler, sogar die Stromkästen werden allesamt mit Gemälden geschmückt - das würde sich in mancher Stadt gut machen zur Verschönerung der Landschaft und zur Freude der Leute die durch die Stadt flanieren.
      Wir erkunden die Stadt zu Fuss und als wir der Bay entlang laufen stellen wir fest, dass wir am Mittelpunkt des WAW angelangt sind ist dies unser letztes Bild mit einem Wild Atlantic Way Sign sein wird.

      Demnächst geht es auf nach Dublin, das Auto zurück bringen, die letzten Tage in Irland geniessen und schon bald wieder zurück nach Hause (zu Jack).
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    • Day 8

      Galway, Ireland

      September 10, 2016 in Ireland ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

      We didn't know what to expect from Galway, but read good things and knew that most of the best sightseeing was close by so we made it our home base for a few days during our West Ireland day trips. We were pleasantly surprised at how much we liked this city! A college town with a great pub scene in the Latin Quarter made for two very entertaining nights. The pubs were huge, filled with character, plenty of characters, and great live music (including popular songs like Galway Girl and Galway Bay).
      We highly recommend a visit if you're looking for fun nightlife, but be sure to bring your rain jacket which seems to be a requirement anywhere in Ireland!

      Oh and I think it's just a fad at the moment but ironically the Irish seem to enjoy Coors light more than their own beer, but not us 😜.
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    • Day 5

      Lacs du Connemara

      July 10, 2008 in Ireland ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

      Allez on change pas les vielles habitudes.... Isrish breakfast et départ 9h pour une balade autour des lacs du Connemara.

      Pour la 1ere fois ,on va rouler dans les terres et la le spectacle est carrément extraordinaire....l'Irlande est vraiment un superbe pays !!! les routes sont splendides ,petites ,vallonnées ,au milieu d'immenses champs de tourbes et de multitudes de lacs. C'est une aventure extraordinaire... Il fau rouler au pas car les moutons traversent et dorment sur les routes... On se sent vraiment proche de la nature. Les couleurs sont extra ,le soleil frappe les collines... bref le paradis !

      Arrêt à RoundStone , un petit port de pêche magnifique. Nous prenons ensuite la direction de la Sky la: elle porte bien sont nom....une route côtière en bord de mer et très très haut perché qui donne une vue sur la cote irlandaise unique !! Superbe soleil mais un vent très violent !
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    • Day 6

      Über die cliffs und den Burren nach ga

      August 9, 2020 in Ireland ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

      In der Vergangenheit sind wir auf dem Bauch Richtung Kante der cliffs gerobbt, jetzt ist der Bereich komplett touristisch erschlossen, wir finden eine Möglichkeit für 3 Euro statt 28 Euro die Klippen zu sehen
      Die nächste Station ist der bekannte Dolmen poulnabrone im Burren
      Übernachtung in Hostel kinlay mitten in galway
      Phantastisches Abendessen im cookes
      Das letzte Bier bleibt einem verwehrt, dank Corona
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    • Day 1

      1st stop Galway

      May 24, 2017 in Ireland ⋅ ☀️ 16 °C

      Nach knapp 2h Fahrt quer durch Irland sind wir in Galway angekommen. Wir mussten noch ein bisschen nach unserer Unterkunft suchen und haben ungefähr 10mal den Code für die Tür an der falschen Tür eingegeben. Bis uns dann auffiel, dass die richtige Tür ein paar Meter daneben ist. Naja, jetzt sind wir da, haben Durst und Hunger!Read more

    • Day 8


      September 25, 2016 in Ireland ⋅ ☀️ 12 °C

      Go West!
      Das Wochenende nutzen wir natürlich aus, um möglichst viel von Irland zu sehen. Wir haben einen Ausflug über Getyourguide zu den berühmten „Cliffs of Moher“ gebucht.

      1. Stopp ist Galway, inklusive kurzem Rundgang. Die Atmosphäre der Stadt ist einzigartig. Malerische kleine mittelalterliche Gassen und typisch irische Pubs.
      Besonders angetan hat es mir das Cupan Tae Cafe. Das Flair der 50er Jahre inklusive Musik lädt zu einer Zeitreise ein. Man fühlt sich wie in einer Puppenstube.
      Bevor es weiter geht, gehen wir noch kurz auf den Farmers Market. Er findet jedes Wochenende rund um die Kirche statt und man findet außergewöhnliches Kunsthandwerk.
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    • Day 2


      July 24, 2014 in Ireland ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

      In der kleinen, aber wirklich feinen Stadt angekommen mussten wir feststellen, dass zurzeit ein Kunstfestival stattfindet und deshalb wirklich alle Hostels ausgebucht waren. So endeten wir am Schluss im B&B von Betty. Betty war wirklich nicht mehr die jüngste, aber so unglaublich freundlich. Wir mussten ihr mehr als einmal versichern, dass wir mit unserem Zimmer, dem Obst, dem Föhn und dem Badezimmer auch wirklich zufrieden sind. Am nächsten Morgen gab es für uns und vier andere Reisende ein bombastisches Frühstück mit allem, was man sich so vorstellen kann. Auch hier mussten wir alle mehrfach versichern, dass wir satt und zufrieden sind! Auch unsere Namen fand sie sehr schön, vergaß sie aber auch schnell wieder :" Oohh, beautiful names, how lovely! What's your name again?" "Ah, yesyes, lovely!"
      Durch das Festival waren wirklich viele Menschen in dem kleinen Städtchen, aber trotzdem mögen wir es unglaublich gerne!
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