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Europe » Ireland » County Cork
August 12th 2019
Published: August 13th 2019
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August 12, 2019

Cobh, Ireland

While at breakfast this morning, I happened to look out the window. As I sat looking, I noticed a seagull floating on the water backwards following the current. The bird took flight went back to the original starting point clumsily flopped back onto the water and floated backwards, this, the bird did at LEAST a dozen times. RIDING THE CURRENT! Cowabunga, DUDE! Hey…even seagulls gotta live in the moment. AMIRIGHT?! Make your own amusement, I say!!

We came alongside very early this morning and neither of us felt a thing. Smooth as silk. Our plans are to take the train into Cork, see some sights then head back to Cobh, have a walk around and then get back on the ship.

The train ride was quick. It runs every half hour and takes about 25 minutes. This train “feels” like a commuter route between the two cities. Makes a few stops along the way – and seems to follow a route along the river Lee. The river must be somewhat tidal – the way in, low tide we saw a variety of wildlife searching the mud flats for their morning meal. On the way back the water was up to the high tide waterline. The currents and tides are swift here!! See above.

Cork is charming. I didn’t know what to expect – perhaps I thought this would be a larger city, or the City Center would be different – I was pleasantly surprised. A little sad that there were so many “to let” signs in shop windows – guess that’s the way of the world. St. Patrick’s Street is the “main drag.” Posh shops like: Tomas Brown, Debenhams, and mainstream shops such as TK MAXX (same as TJ MAXX in the US). So – the street does NOT discriminate. The River Lee runs through town making the city center into an island. Some of the foot bridges are quite nice, but nothing like Dublin.

The English Market, located in the City Center, is a beautiful market filled with produce, cheese, butcher shops and a few fish mongers. Cork MUST be the Chocolate “center” of Ireland – had to be AT LEAST two dozen confectioner stores featuring house made chocolates. Everyone of them had some kind of Irish Whiskey chocolate or chocolate fudge. We didn’t test a single one! SUCH RESTRAINT! Didn’t buy any either. Neither one of us had a chocolate jones today.

Cork is smaller than I thought. I don’t know why…I guess it’s because one hears so MUCH about County Cork! It’s a rather small city – almost more of a Town. Still loved it.

On the train back to Cobh. The ride went by quickly – probably because I was texting one of my cousins in Chicago. They are coming out at the end of August. Final arrangements and such.

We arrived in Cobh where we decided to take the “high street” into town and have a look around the village. This is a village, not a town! The village is famous – perhaps “infamous” is more appropriate for two major maritime mishaps last century. Cobh was the last stop for the Titanic in 1912; and in 1915 survivors (and the dead) of the Lusitania were brought to Cobh. The Lusitania memorial is quite moving. There is a White Star Line CUNARD building where the Titanic docked (just behind the building) – that pier does not survive. We docked just down from the Cunard Building directly across from the Train station.

Houses neatly arranged in a row line the street as it climbs ever so gently sweeping from side to side in a zig zag pattern finally reaching the top where the street meets up with a HUGE Church at the top of the hill. We did NOT climb the hill, nor did we go into the church. We typically avoid churches for a variety of reasons – least of which is that we are both atheists.

We walked from one end of the village to the other. Didn’t take long. Quite a charming little hamlet. Did I just make this place smaller??

Back on the ship. We are ready for lunch. The Terrace back deck – a sandwich from Waves. The aft deck was quite windy, but we toughed through it. The day was glorious, but we can see rain off in the distance heading our way. We’ve been dry ALL DAY – YAY!!!! Shall change soon. We finished lunch and grabbed a strawberry shake from Waves. Sipping our shake….plop, plop, rain…then RAIN.

We decided to rest and hit the stateroom. This is day whatever 20 something? Of the cruise. I have COMPLETELY lost track. Not trying to be a snob or anything – I have COMPLETELY lost all track of time. I DO know we leave Amsterdam on August 22nd. Don’t ask how many days in London or Amsterdam – I have NO CLUE! Anyway – my point…we are both tired of the repetition. I’m done to death with my clothes. They shall all be burned….well….maybe not everything. The shirts shall be spared – can’t speak for anything else. If I see the purple or pumpkin trousers one more time, I shall scream….and we have 10 more days. I have GOT to stop eating and drinking with such abandon….the clothes still fit, but I’d rather they be MUCH looser!!! Ah well…

On that note – we went upstairs on the deck for sail away. Took a BUNCH of pictures, then decided to go to Horizons as the rain started again – and it was a tad bit chilly. Tea was still in full bloom. Didn’t sit, just went from starboard to port and back and forth to catch the view on our way out of Cobh. At one point the pilot stopped in front of us – trying to persuade a small fishing vessel to “get out of the way” – we presume. The poor fisherman must have reeled when he saw us barreling down on him. Clearly, he wasn’t paying attention!!!

Time for cocktails – what did I just say? Don’t listen to me! Campari, then 2 champagnes. Hmmm…I may have a problem. Christopher and a Campari & Soda. Such a good boy! Me – slog.

We took a bottle of Lambert Bridge Viognier to dinner in the Grand Dining Room. We have one bottle left in the suitcase…a Crane Creek Cuvee. Don’t know what we’re saving it for – perhaps a meal in London, if we don’t drink it tomorrow. Or in our Hotel Room. I’m SURE we can find a way to enjoy the wine. WHAT. DID. I. JUST. SAY!

Dinner was lovely. I started with the Borst (as did Christopher) then had the spinach and ricotta stuffed cannolini (sublime); Christopher finally had the roasted chicken – he’s been thinking about it since the second night we got on the ship (way back in Oslo). He too was quite happy. It IS a Jacques “signature” dish. For dessert we each had the Strawberry Romanoff in an almond butter tuille. THE BUTTER!

After dinner we hastened back to the stateroom where we just got comfy. Sometimes one just needs to kick off their shoes and relax. So we did!!

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