Friday, March 29, 2013

EuroBlog! Days 6 & 7: Dingle, Dingle, Dromoland

I titled this one Dingle Dingle Dromoland because it’s catchy and uses alliteration, all things people like, and I’m here for you loyal reader! Speaking of loyal readership, did you know I’m getting something like 55 reads on these things? 55 of you are really interested in reading about my vacation? This is so flattering! I have to believe 2 of those are me and Holly, plus 4 of them might be accidentally reading it via Google and then running away quickly, but even that leaves 49 of you. Anyhow, on to the travel blog! If you read about yesterday’s incredible journey, you’ll know this morning we awoke in the quiet coastal village of Portmagee.

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Our ultimate destination today was Dromoland Castle, but after seeing all the incredible sights yesterday and after seeing that we still had glorious sunshine, we headed off to see the Dingle Peninsula. This also gave Holly the chance to ride a dolphin.

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We scarfed down a delicious lunch at Dingle, where the girl taking my order needed help because she couldn’t understand my accent. This is the view from right outside the front door of the fish place.

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Dingle, which includes the Slea Head Drive, provided some truly unbelievable views. Even though we took longer than we thought, it was hard to regret seeing these sights:

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Tucked way down in an area Avis probably didn’t want their rental car to go was this incredible beach.

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I’m pretty sure I found my happy place here. It’s been a rough go of it lately at home, and just sitting here and enjoying the view for a second was amazing. So look! It’s me in my happy place!

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After we spent way to long on the Dingle Peninsula, we finally headed out past Limerick to Dromoland Castle. On the way I learned how to incorrectly fill up a gas tank in Ireland. For future reference this is what you should do:

1) Insert pump into gas tank

2) Pull nozzle once. Nothing will happen, but that’s okay!

3) Wait for someone inside to trigger the pump

4) Go inside and tell them which pump you used

To me this seems like an easy opportunity to steal petrol, but hey, I don’t make the rules. If you try to go in an put money on the machine first, you will confuse the nice Irish gentleman and make all the people behind you wait.

Onward to Dromoland Castle! So to explain this event you must know that my wife fancies herself a princess, and being a princess it troubles her that she has never once slept in a castle. So this stay at the five-star luxury hotel was quite the special occasion, and was only justified by repeating things to myself like “this is the trip of a lifetime”, “Holly only wants this one thing”, and “it’s almost my five year annniversary”. But we did it! And here’s what it looked like.

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Oh, and yeah, they had a full size chess area…

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We woke up the next morning and enjoyed a walking tour of the castle grounds.

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The highlight of the time, except for the part where I donned every fancy item in the room, from bathrobe to red slippers, and sipped the glass bottle of “still water”, was definitely the carriage ride. We got a full ground and Irish history lesson from this absolutely fascinating storyteller. One thing I’d never though about before was the camaraderie between the Irish and Americans. He was quite proud of Ireland’s revolution against Britain, and was very happy to revel in their success with two people from the other country who wouldn’t have anything to do with British oppression and taxation.

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For the last part of the journey in Ireland, we headed off to the Cliffs of Moher an hour away. After one disgusting meal stop where what you ordered was tonged out of a freezer right out of the counter, we made it to the Cliffs. This is sort of Ireland’s equivalent of the Grand Canyon, and was spectacular and freezing cold. Such amazing views, and at times the sun peaked through here as well.

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We made our back to the airport and we are now safely back to Meleah’s place, ready for tomorrow. Before I go, shout out to our Nissan Micra! It may be about the size of me, but it took us to some crazy awesome.

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