Halcyon Repose

Ireland, The Journal Part 2

by on Oct.07, 2008, under Life

The end of Day five is when I finally started actually taking notes, if the tense changes from past to present, that is why. At some point I should probably go through and standardize all of them.

Day 4
Monday, September 22nd

We left Belfast, and headed toward Derry. We called ahead and found a B&B with a room available, made the trip into Derry, checked in, and then immediately headed out to the Bushmill’s distillery. It was currently undergoing upgrades and it was not currently distilling, but it was still an interesting tour. From there we headed to the coast to the giants causeway. It was a bit of a walk from the carpark, and my knee was acting up from the beginning, but we finally made it there where Joe and I promptly split up to take pictures. I realized really quickly that I need to read up on tips for photographing landscapes, but I did enjoy snatching pictures of the other people there. After taking some pictures we went looking for the wishing chair, but we were unable to find it thanks to the really, horribly, bad map that they give you when you enter.

We headed back to the car, and drove to the Carrick-a-rede rope bridge, but we got there about 20 minutes after it closed. I gave Joe the sadface, and then headed to Dunluce Castle, the larger of the castle ruins along the coast, but it was closed as well. That didn’t stop us from getting some pictures of the castle with the setting sun in the background.

After the drive back to Derry, we arrived at late at 9:30pm, which was to late for most of the restaurants in the city. We found a place called The Diamond which was still open. I had the sausage and champs and Joe got their Irish stew. I kinda got the feeling like the place was the Irish version of Denny’s, even if it was a bit more upscale. My meal only tasted ok, but Joe’s was actually really good. For drinks I had an Abbot ale and a Carling. Both were ok, but nothing to write home about.

We then went to The Metro, where we started into the Harp in earnest. We hit it off with a local couple by the name of Laura and Neil, and we spent the rest of the night drinking with them till late in the evening. It was our heaviest night of drinking by far for the trip. As a note. I suffered a small mishap on the way home, I stumbled off the side walk and twisted my ankle pretty badly, I had to limp back to our room and haul myself up the stairs. I was not a happy camper at all.

Day 5
Tuesday, September 23rd

Got up late after the night of drinking, and went to the Settler’s Inn (the sister B&B to where we were staying) for our breakfast. After yet another full Irish breakfast, we went back to the room so Joe could take a nap before we headed out. As expected, my ankle had stiffened up pretty badly, so I voted to pass on exploring Derry (which I already regret), and instead head on out. I’ll have to visit there again I really did like the town.

We jumped in the car and headed for Galway. Along the way we stopped in Sligo and visited Yeat’s Tavern for lunch, and then we stopped by his grave for some pictures. The graveyard and church were both beautiful and all of the morning’s clouds had blown away by that time.

Afterwards, we continued on to Galway, and once there, we searched for a B&B. We found a small one named the Red Gate House and we took a quick nap before heading to dinner. We walked through the street malls on our way to Quays St, and once there we ate at McDonagh’s of Ireland Seafood Restaurant. The bruchetta was amazing and the spicy seafood pasta out of this world.

Next we headed to the Quays bar on Brenden’s recommendation. It was a large three floor bar with an interesting d├ęcor. The bar was filled with a lush red finish and it was just starting to fill up with customers. We had a pint of Smithwicks, and then decided to head on down the street to see what else we could find.

A few blocks away was a hopping pub called Tig Coili, which advertised itself as the home of traditional music. The place was packed and old black and white photographs lined the wall. Joe was done drinking for the night but I continued on regardless. As I finished a pint of Smithwicks, a few performers started playing in the corner. Since one of Joe’s goals was to experience some real Irish music, I got another pint and we stayed and listened for awhile.

After leaving Tig Coili, I wanted to drag Joe to at least one more pub before calling it a night. I was looking for a loud crowded pub and right on the square we came across Fibber Magees. There was live music playing a a number of people outside. It ended up being only moderately crowded and the music was actually karaoke, but there was a cool laser light effect on the ceiling, so I decided to stay, got a Carlsburg, and enjoyed all the cute girls the pub had to offer.

1 comment for this entry:
  1. keyla

    Hey Jaime. Did you get any photos of the inside of these B&Bs? I’d love to see how they were set up.

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