Ireland - Day 7, April 21

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10:00 am
Had breakfast of fruit, scones, apple decadence, cereal & tang.
Car is packed & we're ready to go
The day began overcast and stayed that way (even rained a bit before the day ended).  It was a good day to be driving to Ballinskelligs.
Oh, I'm pretty sure the liquid was really Tang.  It was definitely not orange juice and tasted like my memory of Tang.  It was good though.

The last view out our room window.  *sigh*

10:44 am
At the Dingle internet cafe
We didn't have too much time, just enough for a few emails and sending some pictures back home (to free up room in the camera).

Let's go swimming!  Not!

12:59 pm
Stopped just outside of Killorglin, pic of cows & river

The calves were really cute.  When I first saw them, off in the distance, I thought they were dogs.  They were jumping and playing and wagging their tails.  It was only as they came closer that I could tell what they really were.

1:43 pm
No, not the Kells, but rather a Kells.  I noted it just because of the name.

2:42 pm
Old school house
Skelligs video
Irish Coffee
We've made it to the Old School House in Ballinskelligs.  We walked in the door and met Dominick.  He immediately sat us down in front of his turf fire (yes, a real peat fire) and started asking about where we'd been and where we were going.  Upon hearing that we were planning on going to the Skelligs the next day, he popped in a video about the islands which was made locally.  It was a good video and was definitely a help.  While we were watching, he disappeared for a few minutes and came back with three Irish Coffees.  He said he only made ours because he wanted one, but I'm not so sure.  Dominick is a good host and very friendly.  He recommended that we drop by the local gallery and head to the chocolate factory (evidently it's known around the world).  Dominick also took the time to call the Bridge Bar in Portmagee to see if they were going to have dancing that night.  They were, so we made plans to be there for it.  A few hours later, we headed off again.

4:54 pm
Ballinskelligs Gallery
It was very quiet in the gallery and there were all types of artwork, statues, carvings, paintings, etc.  Sorry, I don't have any further information right now.  I've made a note to dig up some more, so check back in the future.

5:24 pm
At choc factory. Closed, no hours.
*sigh*  The Skelligs Chocolate Company was closed up tight and there were no signs telling what their hours were.  We were looking forward to a tour and taste.  It took us much longer to get to the factory than we thought it would, based on what Dominick said.  We just kept driving though and eventually found it although there were several times when we were convinced we'd gone too far.
Since that was a dead-end, we kept moving toward Portmagee.

This was taken on the way from Ballinskelligs to Portmagee. We drove higher and higher and the visibility went down and down.

6:26 pm
Portmagee at the Bridge Bar
Having 2 Smithwicks, Harp, fish&chips, sweet&sour chicken.
It was dinner time, so we had dinner.  We heard at the time that there was a French group in town that had joined in some lessons earlier in the afternoon (!) and were going to show up tonight.  All in all it looked like a good night for dancing was brewing.
Once we were done with dinner, we still had some time to kill so we decided to just go driving and see what we could see.  We headed across the bridge to Valentia island and drove west, more or less along the coast.

7:58 pm
St Brendan's well, irish frog, tadpoles
We just decided to drive around and turned onto a smallish road to see where it went.

Shortly along, there was this little guy looking back at us.

Later we saw a sign for St. Brendan's well and decided to find out where that would take us.  It took us finally to a dirt (mud at this point) road and and peat bog where we had to stop the car and hoof it.

The speck near the (apparently) abandoned barn is our car.  There was no way we were going to drive on that dirt track to the right.


Many shots of St. Brendans well.  Nobody around for miles.

This was taken near the well.  I really wanted to hike over to the coast, which wasn't far.  Unfortunately we were in the middle of what I think was a peat bog and solid ground was hard to find.  I decided there wasn't enough time (we had dancing to do) and turned back.

Portmagee at sundown on a soft day.

9:00 pm
Back at Bridge Bar
The owner is actually custom making a 'rita for Susan.
This was just too cool.  Susan asked me to see if I could get a 'rita for her while she was away (I was extremely skeptical but she needed a bit of home).  I asked the owner if he could make one and he didn't know how, so I asked if they had Tequila to which he said yes and ran to the kitchen.  He came back with a bottle and I followed up by asking if he had Quantro or triple-sec.  He ran back into the kitchen to get some Quantro.  By this time Susan returns and gives him mixing directions and he sets about making an impromptu 'rita.


Smithwicks & 'rita
Me, I had more Smithwicks.

9:56 pm
keyboard & accordion started
? Kerry
We actually ended up leaving early this evening.  It was disappointing.  There wasn't enough room for everyone who wanted to dance and things just didn't click.

Stories from Dominick, two pair of shoes, two songs.
I don't remember what time we got back, but Dominick was still up and we talked with him for a few hours.  He told us the story about his dad asking Dominick on leaving the house, if he had both pair of shoes.  One day Dominick asked his dad what he meant.  He basically said that one should always have two pairs of shoes, one that you wear and one that represent (metaphorically) what other people wear.  Always try to put yourself in other peoples shoes in everything you do.
Dominick also sung a couple of songs for us.  One that he wrote after his brother died.

1:11 am


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Last modified: Thursday, April 24, 2008