24 June 2006

Blarney ---> Kenmare

Left Blarney this morning, heading to Kenmare.

Blarney is a lovely little village; mostly a tourist place, home of the Blarney Woollen Mills and Blarney Castle.

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At the top of Blarney Castle

We didn't tour the Mills (though we did spend some money at the shop), but Sean wanted to kiss the Blarney Stone, so we had to visit the Castle. I hadn't planned on climbing to the top of the Castle, because I have such a hard time with stairs these days, but the line was moving so slowly that I decided to give it a try. It took nearly 1/2 hour to reach the top. My legs were okay, and so was the rest of me as long as I didn't look down. Katy and I decided we didn't want to kiss the Stone because we didn't have any wet-naps with us. (Who knows whose lips have been there?) Sean did, and so did Tod. The really hard part was going down the stairs. I was very proud of myself, but my knees nearly buckled when we got to the bottom.

Katy had had an upset stomach since we left Kilkenny on Thursday, so we didn't do very much else. Went to dinner at the Blarney Woollen Mills Hotel, but Katy couldn't eat very much, so we headed back to the house.

Oh, what a cool house!! It was out in the country, about a 5 minute drive out of the Village. Extensive grounds and beautiful gardens. I got a few pictures. They had a dog named Betsy, were looking after another dog named Mikey, and had a 17-year-old black cat with no name who was very shy and skittish. She'd come and knock on our door and run away when we opened it.

Thursday night, Tod and I went into Blarney Village to a pub called the Muskerry Arms. They were advertising a band at 9:30. We got there about 9:15, but the gig room was already packed. We went into the back to watch the end of the soccer game. The band didn't start till the game was over. We squeezed into the front room to listen to the band. They were pretty good; mostly trad Irish music, but they did play Babylon by David Gray.

Friday morning, we drove into Cork City, hoping to score tickets for something at the Cork Midsummer Festival. Unfortunately, the only thing we wanted to see was a production of The Tempest, which was already sold out. Katy was starting to feel ill again, so we went back to the house. It was a fairly quiet afternoon and evening. Tod and I walked around the grounds of the house a bit.

We arrived in Kenmare around noon. After checking into the BnB we headed directly to the laundromat, because we were all running out of clothes. Thence to a pub for lunch (so frustrating how so many of the pubs stop serving food between 3 and 5), and then a rush back to the house to watch the Germany-Sweden match.

Tomorrow, we're going to take a boat tour of the Bay. They say we should be able to see baby seals and sea lions.

BTW, Katy is feeling much better. Hopefully, all of us can hit a pub for some music tonight.
7-4-06 update: For pictures from Kenmare, please click here.

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