Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Day 1

Day 1

We had to be in San Francisco super-ass early to catch our 8:00 am plane to Newark New Jersey. We’ve checked in, I’ve popped my Xanax and now we wait. For over an hour past our due-out time. However, the flight over to Jersey was pretty uneventful. And long. However, two minutes on any plane is too long.

In Jersey we have about a 3 hour layover where we utilize this time to eat and drink and be merry. On the plane, Jodi and I cannot sit together but she winds up next to a darling young Irish couple who, upon hearing our plans, scraps our whole schedule and assigns us a new one. Hallelujah and thank you so much kids….it was literally one of the best weeks of my life!

This flight to Shannon is in the evening so one can sleep as best as one can on a plane. But we finally arrive in Shannon around 7:15. It’s even beautiful at the airport.

I get my first passport stamp:

Now we have to find the Dan Dooley rent a car where we meet, what Jodi called, an Irish Tanya. Only because she’s fast and efficient. Ahem. And she slyly tried to rip us off by telling us to bring back the car empty (gas); no problem. And they make 60€ off that little trick. But we smart.

We were assigned the darlingest little red Fiat. All complete with the wheel on the right and stick shift to the left. Yeow!

Our first traffic issue is a round-about no less. People in Ireland drive like mad! The roads are about as wide as our crappiest bike trails too! Not a good combo. We miss our exit and pull off some random street to speak to a young lad and ask him how the hell we get to Bunratty. He tells us to go back and take the fly over and do this and that and blah blah blah…I smile and thank him and look to Jodi with concern: “Flyover???”

It’s an overpass and by some miracle we find our way back to Bunratty.

We pass the Bunratty castle and find the little road that led to our first and most beautiful B&B. by some heaven sent gift, we are greeted by 4 little jack Russell terriers.

I already feel at home.

Inside we meet Mairead who directs us to our room and suggests that we take an hour or two nap and THEN get up to explore. Well, heeell no! We’re in Ireland! We can sleep when we’re home! So we freshen up a bit and head out to find a place for a bite to eat.

On our way down the road, two of the terriers follow us. I’m not sure what to do; but, assume they do this a lot. Behind us a gold BMW is TEARING down the tiny street paying no mind that he will be creaming the little doggies. I walk one step to the middle of the road and signal for the person to slow down. He passes me, pulls over, gets out of his car and screams “get yer fuckin’ dogs out the road!”

So…I scream back “those aren’t my dogs and you need to slow down anyway!”

He screams back with words only Americans can understand “fuck off!”

Oh yeah? “Fuck you too, you moron!!”

There. Now he’ll have to look up the word ‘moron’ like I have to look up all of their words.

I look over at Jodi who’s mortified. She goes in to her mother mode and explains to me I cannot be talking to the locals like this. Well…I am part Irish so I do reserve the right.

We finish our walk and find a beautiful little restaurant/pub that won’t be open for another 45 minutes so we decide to hit up the little gas station and get a tooth brush. I have to pee too. Everything is so much more different there, you know? The smells, the feel, the air, the vibes; just different.

And the bathrooms are nasty. Probably not more so than an American toity but still a different kind of gross. And the toilets flush weirder than in our home land.

But we get our business done and head to “The Creamery”.

Still not open. Crap. We’re tired and hungry.

(here’s a telefon booth while we wait)
gooby I know but I’m gooby.

Finally, The Creamery is open!!! And it’s fabulous. Jodi orders a beer and I think this is a bad idea because we’ve been up for 30 hours. But I have one anyway.

Yup. Bad idea…we eat and head over to the Bunratty Castle and check it out.

I’ll let the pix speak for themselves…

Dining Hall
(see the castle in the back ground?)
view from the top
just inside the grounds

can you find the beer?

After the castle visit, we cruised over to Durty Nelly’s where the fun REEEEALLY started! There were two older gentlemen there playing the piano and accordion and there we stayed for three hours. We sang, and drank, and laughed, and chatted and melted in the atmosphere. The older gentleman was crooning jodi and she said "I can't tell if he's singing to me or his beer!!" The woman beside me said "Oooh! Typical Irish man!"

It felt very much at home.

When we left, the folks that wree there with us said that was the most fun they’d had in 4 years. I’m like “You don’t do this every weekend???”

We sadly left and headed back to our B&B. A looooong day it was; our bellies were full, showers had been taken, our beds had been turned down, and we finally crawled in for a well deserved sleep.

It was 5:00.


Blogger Vanessa said...

It looks so beautiful! And like you had so much fun!

I'm considering planning a trip later this year.
Please let me know any tips & suggestions you may have.

12:32 AM  
Blogger Shananigans said...

Wow! Way to take the bull by the horns and party it up right as soon as you got there. It's sp pretty, and it looks like you had a great time with the locals. Can't wait to hear more!

9:56 AM  
Blogger Valerie said...

awesome!!! looks beautiful. looks coooooooold though. YIKES!!! Would much rather be in at the beach in the sun. :P


10:01 AM  
Blogger tabitha jane said...

looks glorious!
(i hate jack russels . . . sorry!)

did the toilets there have "poop shelves"? thats all i can think to call them . . . the toilets in germany had them and they were so strange to me . . .

10:13 AM  
Blogger Tanya Kristine said...

we did have the greatest time ever. even more so now that some time has passed.

it was cold and i love tropical weather too but really this was well worth it...

poop shelves? Umm...what the hell is that!?!

1:00 PM  
Blogger tabitha jane said...

instead of a bowl, they have a flat place where your poo just lands . . . and then when you flush, the water shoves it off the shelf and down the hole that's in the front of the toiley . . . someone explained to me that it was so people could search their feces for worms or disease or something during the war . . . i dunno.

here's a picture and here is a silly article about them and here is someone trying to explain it too . . .

that's all i have for you!

3:40 PM  
Blogger Tanya Kristine said...

ohmygod...that is hilARIUOS! i'm getting one for MY house...who doesn't love to look at their poo?? and if they say they don't, they lie.

4:29 PM  
Blogger tabitha jane said...

you should come to germany with us this summer and experience one for yourself!

day two! day two!!

9:24 AM  
Blogger tabitha jane said...

hey, i got your postcard yesterday when i got home from work!! thank you!!! i love the sheep!


9:43 AM  

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