On the way out of Kilkenny the morning of Wed March 23, we stopped and asked this gentleman farmer for directions. He proudly showed off his small flock of sheep.
Geo: 52.1433, -10.2687
Lot of driving today. Starting to figure out that distance – whether in miles or kilometers – has very little bearing on how long it takes to get somewhere in Ireland. It has more to do with the kind of road being navigated. We know that 10K = 6.2 miles (or 100K = 62 miles), but it seemed that the most relevent ratio, just for planning and estimating, was arbitrarily giving ourselves 1 minute for every 1 kilometer.
And whatever time a local guessed it would take us to get from Point A to Point B had to be doubled.
This we learned after trying to non-GPS our way from Kilkenny to Cashel in County Tipperary and then onto Dingle (or An Daingean in the Irish language, Gaeilge) before nightfall, with a 2-hour stopover –
Our wheels for the week -- a Toyota Yaris
It was brand new when we picked it up in Dublin, not so new when we dropped it off in Shannon 5 days later. Probably needs an alignment and maybe a paint touchup on the left hand side, too.
OK, make that 3½ due to a dead camera battery -- to climb and tour the Rock of Cashel.
And Sharon had many near-death experiences as the closest passenger to the rut-filled, no shoulder, stone walled, brush encroaching, non-existent side of the road. She learned to just close her eyes; Mike nearly resorted to blindfold and gag.
Our extended stopover in Cashel was due to Mike's old Kodak camera rechargeable battery going dead. (Shouldn't have videotaped part of that trad music session in Kilkenny!) We walked the entire length of the lovely little town of Cashel looking for a replacement battery that already had a charge (no luck there); we were finally rewarded (or saved) at O'Dwyer's Pharmacy where they had a Fuji battery recharger that FIT the 7-year old Kodak battery. Finding a rosary on the sidewalk while waiting for the battery to charge was a sure sign that Someone was looking out for us!
The Rock of Cashel is a cathedral, chapel, round tower, and fortress on the top of a limestone outcropping above the town. St. Patrick baptized the king here in 450 AD. What an impressive example of ancient architecture and spirituality!
Off on a 3-hour jaunt on country roads
to Dingle in time to check into our waterfront B&B, grab a nice seafood and potatoes dinner, and catch a terrific trad session at John Benny's Pub. The Irish accordion player was John Benny himself, the pub owner, and the incredible vocalist was his wife. Best live music we heard during our week in Ireland.
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Mike and Sharon, Welcome back to the States. From what I've read on your blog and from the pics you posted, Ireland seems to be a beautiful country.
My favorite pic Mike.