Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Dublin, Trinity College and Temple Bar district

Thursday August 23, 2007

Well I finally made it to Dublin after my flight was rerouted to Atlanta from Cincinatti. I arrived about 9:30 a.m. and caught the 41 bus which went straight to my hostel. Unfortunately, check-in was not until 2:00 p.m. so I walked around until then.

First I went to Trinity College to see the Book of Kells. This book was written by Scottish monks in the 8th century. It is in latin and represents the 1st 4 books of the new testament. The pictures and artistic writing are unbelievable and I cannot imagine how much time it took to create that much detail. Google the Book of Kells if you get a chance. I then went to the Long Room which is their library and home to over 700,000 books. Most of them are over 400 years old and in latin.

By this time it was well after 2:00 so I checked into the hostel and caught a few hours sleep. When I woke up I went to the Temple Bar which is Dublin's equivalent of the French Quarter. With over 1000 pubs in Dublin, I do not see how they get any work done. I found a nice pub with original Irish fok music and ordered my first Guinness. It is very dark and takes several minutes for it to settle so that you can drink it. It was quite bitter but by the second pint I could see that this could become an acquired taste.

I met two girls from England and we tried several other Irish beers and Jameson whiskey. One of the English girls was drinking Jameson and lemonade. Tasted pretty good. I was told by an Irish woman on the plane that I would probably spend a lot of my time in the pubs while in Ireland because that is where the Irish spend their time. I can see that now.

The Irish like to go to the pubs and have craic. The first time I heard that I was a little surprised and then I learned that craic is good conversation and a good time.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Powerscourt House and Gardens

September 18, 2007

Today I took a guided bus tour to Powerscourt House and Gardens, Glendalough, and through the Wicklow Mountains. The Gardens are supposed to be one of the most beautiful in all of Europe. The house and gardens reminded me very much of Versailles. I fly back to New Orleans tomorrow and can't wait to see everyone.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Cahir Castle and Swiss Cottage {Cahir, Ireland}

After going to the Rock of Cashel I stopped in Cahir to see the Cahir Castle which is one of the best preserved castles in Ireland and the Swiss Cottage which was about 3 km away.

Blarney Castle , Blarney Stone and Witches Steps

The first picture is the Blarney House which is the residence of the family that owns Blarney Castle. Legend has it that anyone who kisses the Blarney Stone receives the "gift of gab". Also, if you walk down and up the Witches Steps backwards with your eyes closed you will receive whatever wish you are thinking of at the time. A witch supposedly grants these wishes because the owner of the castle let her collect firewood on the property when she lived nearby.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Rock of Cashel

Sunday August 26, 2007

The pictures are the Rock of Cashel in Cashel, Ireland. Legend says that St. Patrick arrived here in AD 432 and baptized King Aengus, who became the Ireland' s first christian ruler. This is also where he plucked the shamrock to explain the mystery of the Trinity and is how it became Ireland's symbol. This was the home to the kings of Munster from 370 AD until 1101.