Where do I begin? Saturday had a great afternoon with David and his family, and he took me to Boston Logan at 4PM. Easy check-in and boarding, pleasant flight to Dublin, and I caught a few hours sleep on the plane before arriving at 5:30 AM. One thing I worried about was making sure I could get Euros from an ATM, I had all bases covered (ATM card, Pin number for credit card, etc) only thing I did not count on was a storm that knocked out all the ATM systems in Dublin the night before. Well again to solve all I did borrow 50 Euros from David (he carries many different currencies at all times), and eventually I found a working ATM in a little village. Car check in was also very easy, and I have a lovely 5 speed Diesel Renault.
Instead of driving straight to Cashel, the other night I decided to drive to the 6th century Glendalough Monastic site passing first Powerscourt Gardens (not open at 8 AM) and then over the Wicklow Mountains. I then followed back roads (once you leave the few motorways they are all back roads) eventually arriving in Kilkenny where I had lunch and toured the castle. When a 12th century castle is owned by one family as a residence for 500 years it gets modernized at various time periods, so viewing this was interesting, and some of the 19th century “upgrades” are still extant. Finishing up there I found the back road to Cashel that took me past the Famine Warhouse which was the site of a rebellion in 1848. I want to learn as much as I can about the Famine, and the resulting deaths and migrations that lasted over 100 years – you may find it interesting.
Another intriguing thing I can’t get over (note picture above) is that the roads (even through fields) cannot be straight – have only room for 1 3/4 cars at best – and have hedgerows either natural, below grade, or formidable stone walls – towering blocking views, and leaving no place to go. Something I have to learn about.
In my reading at dinner (in a small pub in an ancient hotel) I found a way off the path walled medieval town I want to visit tomorrow. Kilkenny was a walled town, but too big for me to enjoy (remember I connect to Walpole more than a big city like Keene – ha ha). I am afraid if I ramble along too much that you may not come back and read again, so I will sign off for now and upload and label a few images in a slide show below. Thanks for visiting with me.