Part 9 – Ireland C

After leaving Kinsale, we had a couple of hour drive, some of it winding along the coastline. Or did we purposely choose the coastline? Probably both. It’s really here nor there but it was a lovely drive. I think we stopped in Cobh to see if the famine ship was there as it had been the when Carolyn was in Ireland before. No, it wasn’t there but at its home in New Ross. We hoped it would still be close enough to see. More on that later. 🙂 Cobh (pronounced Cove) and previously being named Queenstown, was the final port of call for the Titanic. At the visitor’s center there is a Titanic museum of sorts.

Coastal beauty of Ireland

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“Oreo” cows

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We drove on into the area where the Mennonites live, along the southern coast of Ireland. We arrived at the Yoder residence and their daughter showed us our lodgings in their guest quarters. They wanted to show us the cliff walk that they enjoy and boy howdy, was it pretty! It had been another sunny day and the evening light was beautiful!!

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There were so many things I didn’t get pictures of … our homey lodgings, Hannah’s pottery, lunch with the single ladies in their beautiful home, the gas station/bakery with a Choice Books room that made The Best scones!!

Another highlight was a visit to the site of the wilderness camp. It is patterned after wilderness camp schools in the US. When were there, no one was staying there yet but they were doing day trips. Carolyn had worked with Wes in Pennsylvania at a camp. Wes took us back to visit the site.

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We got details for the Dunbrody replica ship, one of the many which transported people to the US & Canada during the potato famine in the mid-1800s. This was very interesting, especially as we have an ancestor who came over on such a ship. Like many families,  our great++++grandmother lost her family on the way over due to sickness in the barely livable conditions on the boats. These boats were also called coffin ships because so many people died en route.

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According to the sign below, potatoes were the staple of the farmer’s diet. A working man ate between 10 and 14 lbs. of potatoes every day. Can you imagine?

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These ladies represent the “first class” passenger and I use that term loosely when it comes to their lodgings, and a farmer’s wife.

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See if you can understand their rich Irish accents.



If you ever have a chance to tour it, we highly recommend it!

After a long weekend there, we headed toward Dublin. On the way we toured Cahir Castle, one of the best preserved castles.

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Cannonball lodged in thick walls:

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We also drove past the Rock of Cashel, where St. Patrick lived and ministered. We had thought this would be a priority to tour, but by this point we had seen so many castles and experienced so much history, that we just stopped for pictures and then kept moving.

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An Abbey a short distance away:

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On to Dublin ….

Part 8 – Ireland B

The next day we had  a big day trip ahead of us! Lots of exciting things to see and do and experience.

Our first big thing was the Cliffs of Moher. We had a several hour drive, including a short ride on a ferry. A few things we saw on the way to the Cliffs:

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In this area they were cutting peat for burning.

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It dries in the sun before it’s ready to burn.

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Examples of  newer Irish Architecture

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Can you guess what this is?

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It is a golf course, or at least part of one.

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Not the immaculately manicured ones that we see here, eh? It is probably closer to the golf courses at the birthplace of golf in Scotland than what we’re used to seeing.

The Cliffs of Moher

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It is very hard to capture the height and magnificence of these cliffs!

I’m not sure how tall the tower at top of the cliff is but from the top of the tower to the surface of  the water is around 700 feet.

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Puffins live and nest in the cliffs but we were not able to see any.

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The Cliffs have recently been fenced off as there have been deaths from people getting to close to the edge. The people on the cliff below are beyond the point allowed. It was rather odd. There were Do Not Walk Beyond This Point signs posted but many people walked around them and the employees didn’t seem to respond to it.

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There were gazillions of tourists out this day, as it was a beautiful, sunny day! There were a few musicians here and there, giving us a taste of Irish music.

We went to a beach at a nearby town to eat lunch and watch the locals learn to surf and otherwise just really enjoy a beautiful and completely sunny day in Ireland, which is somewhat unusual and treasured.

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Our next big event for the day, was touring and then dining at Bunratty Castle.

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Those four corner towers each contain spiral staircases and you totally go in circles getting top to bottom!!

The Great Room

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Servants’ Quarters

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Guest Quarters – The Bedroom

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Guest Quarters – Dining/Breakfast Room

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There was a small working village surrounding the castle.

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Here is a stack of dried peat for burning.

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This cottage smelled odd. We figured out it was the peat smoke. Yikes!

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In the evening we took in the banquet, which was fun!!

We all gathered in the Great Room to enjoy cube bread dipped in salt.

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We were also served honey mead, a ancient-recipe “wine”, and from what I remember, it was more likely what the working class drank, than the upper class.

They also had a harpist and violinist playing.

As we were leaving later in the evening we met the violinist on the path. We chatted a bit and told him how much we loved his music. He really was a “brilliant” musician. He asked where we were from. We told him USA and he said, “I lived there for a while.” After a few more questions he mentioned that he had been to Juilliard.

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The supper was delicious! We had a root soup served in a bowl. The only utensil we had was a steak knife (dagger they call it) to use. We had BBQ ribs, chicken drumsticks, pork filets, rutabagas (I think) and a few other veggies.

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It was hard to get good pictures since it was fairly dark and I wanted too keep from getting too flashy.

Throughout the meal the wait staff sang Irish folks songs.

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Here’s a sampling of the singing:


It was a bit expensive but it was worth the splurge. 🙂 After all, we saved lots of $ by cooking at our own house.

After spending 4 days in western Ireland, it was time to move on.

We stopped in the small coastal town of Kinsale. The ship Lusitania was sunk off the coast here in 1915 by a German submarine. It sank so quickly that more than half  of the 1,959 passengers died. One of my favorite historical fiction novelists is MaryAnn Minatra. In her one trilogy she uses this incident as part of her novel, The Heirloom. Her character is rescued by a local fisherman and barely survives.

We took time to visit the small museum in Kinsale. It was interesting to see artifacts from that terrible tragedy.



Something else we saw in the museum.

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We were headed to Dunmore East, where we stayed at the Yoder’s guest house.

But that portion will have to be saved for next post. 🙂

Part 7 – Ireland A

We took the ferry from Holyhead, Wales into Dublin, Ireland. It was a very large ferry and we had a relaxing couple of hours crossing the Irish Sea. After going through customs, we caught a taxi to central Dublin to our the car rental place. They were sure we needed a mini-van instead of the car we had rented, so we agreed to the free upgrade and were glad we did. Now mind you, their mini-van is still smaller than ours. My sister had taken care of all the car rental stuff and it was considerably higher than then the English rental. And they nearly had 3 conniptions that she chose to reject the added insurance. But as a part of the rental agreement, they charge a large sum, say a couple grand, to a renter’s credit card and then refund it when the car is returned safe and sound. There’s no way you can reject that.

But with my brave sister behind the wheel, and me in the navigation seat once more, we headed through the city and out to the southwestern part of Ireland. We had a cottage rented, with 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. It felt rather luxurious to have my own bedroom and bathroom!!


View from the front of the house:

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Our house was between the Dingle Peninsula and near the beginning of the Ring of Kerry close to the town of Killorglin.

As we did with the other houses we rented, we cooked as many meals as possible. I was looking for bread in a grocery store and found a package of farls. Basically it’s a cross between a potato cake and bread, although I didn’t know that at the time. We put them in the toaster to heat them up and they went splendidly with soup. Here is a recipe I have pinned to try sometime: Potato Farls.

The second day we were in Ireland, we headed out to town of Dingle. Ring of Dingle is the loop drive out near the tip of Dingle Peninsula. Isn’t that the coolest name ever!?!

On our way out to Dingle, we found a famous beach. Some movie was filmed there and that seems to be a big deal.

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Because the coast was very rocky, it seems like one of the few flat sand beaches in this area.

Soon after, it clouded over and kind of misted off and on for the remainder of our trip.

This is one of the many stone buildings around the area that are centuries old. Many have a religious history.

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The Dingle Peninsula is one of the areas of Ireland that was seriously affected by the Great Irish Potato Famine. In this area, it has not been farmed since people left in the 1860s.  Can you see the ridges below? Those are still there from that era. I’ll have more on the famine later.

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We also toured a group of buildings that is also still unoccupied from the famine.

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Pictured below is a scene that is highly photographed. A. It’s beautiful. B. It actually has a pull-over so you can safely take pictures of it. As you can see from the road above ^ there is not an over abundance of road space.

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Just passed this pull-over, in the cluster of houses on the right, was a cute little house where they advertised pie and tea. So we stopped and had a delightful little break. Her pie was more like a flat tart.

Off the coast there is a grouping islands. Among them is the Sleeping Giant. This is also the furthermost west point of Ireland and Europe.

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This is an old church called the Gallarus Oratory. No one knows for sure when it was built but is it most likely at least 800 years old, and some people put it closer to 1500 years old. The walls are several feet thick. The stones stay in place because they are so well placed, and not because mortar was used.

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My sister was the brave driver again! We didn’t have time to drive on the northern loop so we took a shortcut to head back to our house.

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The next day we drove through Killarney to the Killarney National Park. Our destination was Muckross House.

This is a beautiful estate that was occupied one of the many ruling English landholders back in it’s day. Keep in mind that while the peasants living of off of potatoes were barely suriving, some of their landlords lived like this. I’m sure there were many landlords that didn’t live near so grand but that does take some of the charm out of it. . Especially when millions died from lack of food, while there was much food being exported. I was going to wait to say more about this until later. 🙂 Construction of this house was completed in 1843, just 2 years before the famine.

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The gardens were quite lovely. You can see how large the rhododendron bushes are below.

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We took a tour of the house. As usual, no photos allowed. It was grand. And there were working farms. You could also walk or pay for a horse and cart  (called a jaunting car) ride to the nearby Torc waterfall. However, we also wanted to visit a sheep farm a bit south of there. We were told that you don’t want to head clockwise on the Ring of Kerry. The road has very narrow places, and all of the tour buses are traveling counterclockwise. So by mid-afternoon, we would’ve caught them coming back. So we boogied out, and were we ever glad we did. We did meet 1 or 2 buses and there were not kidding about the roads. Some places had a rock wall on the left literally inches from the road. The buses are bigger henceforth they owned the road.

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We finally found the sheep farm in the middle of a very rocky terrain. Far from any town. The owner told us they only have phone satellite service.

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Each dog is taught a different signal. That way he can be calling out to various dogs at the same time and they won’t be confused. They listen only for the signals they were taught. These dogs were ready to move 100% of the time. The second he gave a command they took off. This one is “guarding” the sheep that are already corralled. The owner said he wouldn’t leave them there alone for fear the dogs would eventually tear into the sheep. They are protecting the sheep from escaping, not keeping them from harm.

We came in on the shearing while a tour group was there. The tour leader cracked us up. He wasn’t Irish, but German (I think). He seemed to think we had some kind of connection. It was inappropriate, just like maybe he’s done tours for Mennonites before. 🙂

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Sheared vs. Unsheared

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Their fleece is worth very little, due to it being messy form living in rough terrain. The meat is of more value than anything. This farm has 3,000 sheep but tourism is their subsistence. The paperwork involved is crazy. Three sets of paperwork for every sheep. If one dies or is killed, paperwork has to be filed on it. Imagine that X3.

They also had sheep cheese for sale.

It was definitely worth seeing.  You can see their reviews on Trip Advisor.

On our way back we didn’t encounter any buses, but we did come up on school group that was biking along this road. FRUSTRATING! The road is so very narrow and curvy that it was very difficult to pass them. There is no shoulder along the road for them to get off to let us pass. At one point, one of the girls tipped over into a ditch but her co-riders couldn’t even stop to help. That was definitely the most stressful driving of the whole vacation.

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Part 6 – Wales

Our entrance into Wales was uneventful. Our first steps into Wales weren’t.

We were blissfully relaxing on the train from London headed to the northern part of Wales. Our debarking point was LLandudno Junction. We thought we knew how to pronounce it but we were not prepared for the Welsh language!!! So when I say we were relaxing, I mean it. The car we were in had plenty of room so I was in a seat by myself, shoes kicked off, stretched out. We pulled into yet another station. I happened to glance out the window and saw the name: LLANDUDNO JUNCTION. I (possibly) yelped,”This is our station!” We made a mad dash to exit (helter-skelter, pell-mell if you understand The Pokey Little Puppy speech). Lois was the first one out and she quickly stopped the conductor and he somewhat annoyedly urged us to hurry. Once she explained why we nearly missed it, he was amiable. We stretched their 30-second stop to at least a 1.5 minutes and found ourselves on the platform, giggling in relief that we didn’t have to back-track from the next stop. And if you’re thinking we were just dumb American tourists that think everyone should make time for them, well, this is the only stop we almost missed! 🙂

We thought it was pronounced Lahn-DAHD-noe. Instead, it sounded closer to London-NOW, only the double L sound is a different sound. Put your tongue in position to say an “L” and then hiss. That’s the starting sound. But…. amid some drama of exiting, we now had a decision to make. Our destination was the nearby town of Conwy (CON-wee, easy to pronounce, PTL!) so we could either walk the mile there, or wait a few minutes to catch another train right into Conwy. We chose the latter.

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Choosing Conwy was good for several reasons. First, Lois found it in the travel books by Rick Steves. Second, it was a lovely little town. Thirdly, since our next country to visit was Ireland, this was only about an hour from Holyhead where we were going to catch a ferry to Dublin.

We had booked a B&B in Conwy, also recommended in RS’ book. It was a great choice, both for the town and the B&B named Glan Heulog. We contacted our hosts, Stan & Viv,  for directions and they offered to come pick us up. It wasn’t far to their house but with our luggage a ride was most welcome.

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Glan Heulog is the on the left half of this house.

Since we got in early evening, we got situated in our rooms and then headed back into Conwy for supper. It was so nice to be able to walk into town, since we didn’t have our own transportation. Also, this was a good time to split up for a day’s activities and everyone could have some solo time.

The next morning, Sunday morning we were chatting with Viv, the owner, as we were eating breakfast. We asked about churches and she mentioned a Methodist church, which with the little research we had done, was the one we were planning to attend. She said there is an American lady who is a member of that church and we should be sure to look her up. When we walked in the church, one of the first people we saw was this lady, Sylvia. She came over and introduced herself and seemed delighted to meet us. I think there were a few tears in her eyes. She had to leave to tend some other errands but told us she wanted to talk to us after church. It was an interesting service, a bit more formal than the American Methodist churches. During this service, there was a confirmation ceremony for a young, early-teen girl, as well as a farewell for the pastor and his wife. Also because of the farewell, the church had a carry-in lunch (not sure what they call it). Sylvia insisted we stay for lunch and so we did. We had a delightful time chatting with our table full of ladies. Mrs. Mary was also seated at our table and she told us of growing up in London during WWII. In fact, she wrote a book and sent a signed copy home with us.

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B row: Lois, Sylvia, Carolyn

F row: Ruby, Mary, me

Silvia’s father had grown up “black bumper” Mennonite, although he never joined the church. Sylvia had come to the UK for a bit and ended up in Conwy, Wales. In joining a photographer’s group, she met Peter, whom she married. The last evening we were in Conwy, they invited us over for dinner. I didn’t take my camera along so do don’t have photos from that evening. All the more reason to keep a point-and-shoot handy. Lugging a big camera around does get to be a chore at times. They had a lovely place surrounded by beautiful flowers and it is really too bad I can’t show that to you!

Going in circles:

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Sunday afternoon and evening we 4 split up and headed out whichever direction we pleased. It is hard to describe how beautifully this stop in our trip was for all of us. We had reached the halfway mark in our 4-week trip. We were all in need of some breathing room. We singles aren’t used to being with people 24/7 like this! 🙂 There was no rain the entire time were in London, and then again in Wales, it was sunny and warm. They said it had rained nearly everyday for the  previous week or two. Being able to enjoy many hours outside without dodging rain was a blessing.

I took a tour of the main part of the castle.

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The castle walls encompass much of the town of Conwy. The main castle (above on right), is still quite an interesting sight. It was built from 1283 – 1287, another move by the British to control all of  what is today called United Kingdom.  You can read more of the history HERE.

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The walls are higher than they look!

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Looking down in the town. You can see the walls in the distance.

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The area where the Great Hall had been.

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There were lots of pigeons and gulls, flying and cooing and squawking.

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And nesting.

The river below the castle is a tidal river, and the difference from low to high tide was significant!

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Conwy has the smallest house in Great Britian. I didn’t take time to tour it but Lois said it was quite small. I mean, it’s only 72″ wide and 122″ tall, and that’s including a sleeping loft. Oh, and the last person to live there was 6′ 3″. I wonder how many times he hit his head?

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For some reason it was very hazy on this day!

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Sunday evening dusk.

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Proof we really were there!

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Conway at Dusk

We enjoyed some new foods. Lois tried mushy peas on the one restaurant and after sharing a taste, we all wish we would’ve tried it. Mushy peas is made from Marrowfat peas, which are also the peas in Wasabi peas.  You can watch a video on how to make them HERE. So, what are marrowfat peas? Wikipedia says, “Marrowfat peas are green mature peas that have been allowed to dry out naturally in the field, rather than be harvested in their prime of youth like the normal garden pea.” So, if your peas get away from you in your garden, you can still use them and make mushy peas. Here in the South, dried peas are cooked to a soupy consistency so it’s no wonder we liked them.

A drink I loved:

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And a kebab meal with fresh chips that was not quite like other kebab meals (shaved meat) but chicken strips grilled.

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On Monday we headed out early, way early to catch a train to explore more of Wales. This was unfortunate, because we missed the breakfast served by Stan and Viv at the B&B. And the following morning we were going to leave even earlier, to catch a train to Holyhead, en route to Ireland. So, I reminded them, this is usually why we don’t do B&Bs. Because we don’t slow down enough to get the full B&B benefit! They did leave out bread, jam and water for us to make tea. It wasn’t their fault we missed breakfast but they looked out for us just the same. On the other hand, we only had a few days to see a little bit of Wales so we had to make the most of it.

We took the train south into Snowdonia National Park and saw a lot of wild, mountainous scenery. It was beautiful and rugged and sparsely populated.

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We stopped in the town of Betws-y-Coed. Yeah, try pronouncing that one! I’ll give you a hint: It sounds like Betsy Koyd. At the train station there were quite a few shops to browse. Away from the station was a beautiful little town. We found a bakery and bought some pastries and ambled across the small river and ate our breakfast. We meandered back into town and stopped a the church, which was open with no one around. We took the opportunity to sing! 🙂

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We got back on the train and headed further south, our next stop being Blaenau Ffestiniog (I know, aren’t these Welsh names just amazing!) This is the area where slate mining is done.

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Many if not most houses are roofed with slate. They are cut  similar in style to shingles but are very hard and very durable! Around the town and the mine site are large hills covered with slate refuse.

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We four crammed into a little car and disappeared down into the slate cavern.

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 This was the first time I’ve ever been underground. And going down in such a tight car is not great for anyone with serious claustrophobia. Thankfully I only have  slight case of it. 🙂 And we were having so much fun that I didn’t think of it very much. Down in the caverns it was cool and damp and dark.

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Yeah, it was a little hard to get any good pictures way down. In this room they played some Welsh male choir music. It was beautiful!

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Click on this link for a mini trip via Rick Steves to this mining town: Blaenau Ffestiniog.

We had a little extra time before the train returned north so we walked around the town a bit.

View beyond the town:

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Another view out the other direction:

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And here is where I captured a masterpiece. I call it Slo Mo Sheep Trot. Although I’m considering other titles as well. Like Up Thy Shutter Speed, Sister!  Or, I Don’t Know, Officer, It All Happened So Fast! 

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Can’t you just feel the emotion!? 🙂

We certainly didn’t see all of Wales, in fact, we really didn’t even scratch the surface. But it was a lovely time and we were nearly overwhelmed by the beauty, relaxation and the friendly interactions with both our B&B hosts, and Sylvia and Peter. Touring is great, but interacting with people is even better.

Click the link to see a mini tour of Conwy Castle.

Next up: Ireland

Part 5 – England in a Day

We had seen a good bit of England already but there was much we wouldn’t see. Since we hadn’t seen near as much of London as we wanted, it was a bit of decision to decide between an extra day of London and seeing more of England. We decided to take an England-in-a-Day tour offered by Premium Tours. They have a number of different tours but this had the places we most wanted to see.

We had a difficult time finding the right place to join the tour. We didn’t realize there was a Victoria Station for trains (both underground and overground), Victoria Station for local buses, and Victoria Coaches Station. See Chapter Four: Frustrations of London Travel.

So after multiple phone calls and standing at the wrong Victoria Station for buses (the local one) for a while and finally figuring out where to go, we got there at the tail end of loading process. We had a very entertaining tour leader who referred to himself as “Handsome Alan.” That was to be the codeword for getting into the exhibits or on the bus. With big tours, occasionally other tourists will try to gain free entrance by blending in with a big group.

Despite being full of himself, he was funny for one day. Several days in a row of his humor may have to been too much. Driving through London on our way out to the country, he showed us things we would’ve otherwised missed.

Our only view of Harrods of London:

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A replica of Queen Elizabeth’s coronation gown in their window:

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Such as the street Princess Diana grew up on, her favorite restaurant, etc. We were educated on the “proper” way of pronouncing words like aluminium (a-lu-MIN-ee-um), Keswick (KEZZ-ick), and the Greenwich Time (GREN-itch) “oh, and yeah, time starts and stops in England,” he gloats. “It’s easy”, he’d say. “Get it right. Don’t be embarrassing yourself.” (Of course, we chewed that for the next couple of weeks!) He told us we were going through areas of attacking sheep, and cows that threw boomerangs, and pick-pocketing elderly people. Here are some of the signs he was referring to:

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Wonder what he would say about this one? Beware flying motorbikes?? Evil Knieval?

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Our first stop, after an hour or more of driving, was Stonehenge.

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It is in the middle of a farming country. It is still a puzzle as to its origin and purpose. This kind and size of stone is not found in this area an most likely came from Wales. How did they move it overland that far? Why? Does it have religious significance? Was it a calendar of sorts? At winter and summer solstice, the sun rises at a center point which makes them pretty sure that time has some significance in it’s construction. It is now fenced off so you can see it for free from the road through a chain-link fence, or you can pay admission to walk around it. You can only walk up to it with a special entrance fee, which is usually in the evenings. Unfortunately they implemented those restrictions because tourists were beginning to desecrate it by chipping  away pieces to take along home.

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Last winter I was discussing visiting Stonehenge with a local businessman who had been there in December. He mentioned that it was at over-rated but I reminded him that if you consider the unknown details and how important it was to someone to move these enormous multi-ton rocks with very basic equipment 200+ miles to this spot. Summer solstice sunrise is a popular time for attendance. However, I would stay away from it on that date.

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In the above photo, the peak sticking up on the tallest rock on the left, was made to fit into a notch cut out of the rock that had been on top.

One of the points of interest was driving through the Cotswalds. Of the 4 main points of interest, this was the least noteworthy. Partly because we had been to other parts of England that were just as pretty and looked similar, partly because we were on a bus and you couldn’t stop when you saw something interesting. And partly too because after jostling along in a bus for an hour, both morning and evening, I got a bit drowsy and a nap felt inviting.

We passed Prince Charles’ “back door” as Handsome Alan said. It was, actually, the back gated entrance to his estate where they live.

We were in Bath (pronounced Bahth) for an hour or 2. It was just enough time to whet the appetite and to only spend time at 1 place. That place, for me, was the Roman Baths. Yes, the Jane Austen Center was nearby as well but we had very little time to see it and the Baths are much more historic, as well as close to our bus stop. Bath, in the Austen Era, was considered the Hollywood of England. The place to see and be seen.

But before we did our touristy stuff we grabbed a quick lunch. We had been hearing about pasties (pronounced pahsteez). It is sort of a hand-held pot pie, the crust like a pie crust, but pinched closed like a turnover. HERE is a recipe that I have pinned but haven’t tried yet, in case you want to get a better idea of what I’m talking about.

I didn’t get very many pictures of this area. It was hustle, hustle, quick see what you want to see. The disadvantage of doing a bus tour instead of driving.

The cathedral to the left, the Roman Baths to the right.

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The Roman Baths have recently been uncovered and are thought to be 2,000-ish years old.

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The spring water is warm and sulphuric. A lady, centuries ago, had not been able to get pregnant. Very soon after she drank this water, she became pregnant. Hence, it is believed to have healing properties.

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 If you’re not into history, you may want to skip this place, because it’s all about history.

Ancient coins found here:

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I had a few minutes so I went to the cathedral. A choir from out of town was singing. It was quite a beautiful.

I also skipped a few blocks back to get some pictures of Bath from a bridge we had crossed coming in.

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See those houseboats above? There were quite a few canals throughout England and we often saw these type of houseboats. Many were brightly colored. I don’t know if they were holiday (vacation) boats or year-round homes.

I also didn’t get to see Royal Crescent.


photo source

Or if you’re an Austen fan:

royal-crescent (1)

photo source

A few scenic shots as we left Bahth.

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Next we headed to Stratford upon Avon, aka, the birthplace of William Shakespeare. We first were treated to scones, juice and champagne, as well as a lady giving us a one-act play of one Shakespeare’s works. Not sure which one.

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Most of the scones we had, had currants (similar to raisins) in them.

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She was good!

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As per usual, we couldn’t take any pictures inside. I know they had some interesting stories to tell, but we were 2 weeks into information soaking and of course, you can’t remember even a fourth of everything you hear. And it’s too much fun enjoying it too take notes of everything. There are many things that are best just enjoyed without the pressures of recording each thing.

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A few nearby shops were still open and we spent the rest of our free time perusing them. And grabbed another pastie for half price from the bakery that was about to close. Yum. Seriously yum!

We got back into London in the early evening. Too late to really see much more and we were just about worn out anyway. All that riding on the bus, and eating pasties, and hearing Handsome Alan stories.

You’ve already heard about our frustrating exit from London on Saturday so my next post will be about Wales.

Lovely Wales. Can’t wait to show you the beauty that is Wales!