That being said, Ireland was a hard trip for me. I have talked about it a little with a few friends, but I am more of a person that keeps things to myself to reflect on and tends to blame myself. Here is the honesty part...
I hate driving. I hate being in a car. I hate being car sick. I need a break. On vacation I want to be outside and walking 99% of the time. When other people are unhappy I tend to feel that I did something wrong and have to make them happy. When 3 people are stuck in a car that has the steering wheel on the wrong side, is driven on the wrong side, in a country where there are no street signs, and what is suppose to be an hour of driving everyday turns into 8 stomach-churning hours with grumpy passengers and enough stress to make my heart feel like someone's iron fist was gripping it at every turn. The truth is, I hardly took any pictures because I take pictures of things I love and things I enjoy. And when I take pictures of things I love and things I enjoy I post them on here. **crickets chirping** Hence, there were no blog posts while I was in Ireland.
Okay, now that you officially feel like I am whining about a great opportunity to go to Ireland, I will say I DO have good memories, I DID taste some great food, and I WILL go back. Next time I have notes to go off of. First, I will stay in one place for at least 3 days at a time and make it my homebase. I do better with a homebase and it really makes where you stay feel like a home away from home. Second, I am learning that when someone is in a bad mood that is their problem and not mine. (Same goes for when I am in a bad mood.) I was pretty offended by one of my sisters and started wondering if I could travel with her again, but looking back gives one perspective. Being trapped in a stressful situation day after and not being able to walk away from people when you aren't in the best of moods is the worst. I never thought about her side of it. We all deal with stress differently. I seek solitude or just remain silent. She was not afforded that opportunity. Next time I am going to realize there is nothing I can do or could do to prevent her mood and also give her leeway to just be. Third, I love to eat. Could you not tell from my blog posts? Good food is important to me and finding amazing restaurants is as well. While we did score at some pretty phenomenal places in Ireland, it gave me pause to reflect on Italy and France. These places are more of food meccas and that is important to me. My next place will incorporate good food experiences in which I anticipate plenty of pictures. Lastly, weathermen lie. I sometimes think of the Steve Martin movie, "LA Story", in which he jests that the weather in LA is always sunny and 75 and does not bother to research the actual weather. (A great movie, I highly recommend it.) Anyway, Ireland is know as being wet and cole and rainy. Well, we happen to be there when it was sunny and 75 everyday day with perhaps 1 1/2 days acception. I packed tons of sweaters. Hmm...hiking 7 miles along the Cliffs of Moher in sweaters and boots does not make for a happy camper. Regardless of what weather is expected, always pack in layers, and always pack sandals and closed toed shoes. You never know when a heat wave or unexpected rainstorm will hit when you are traveling and that last thing you want to do is buy a whole new wardrobe abroad.
|When in Ireland...drink Irish Beer. Bushmills Distillery outside of Portstewart where we stayed|
|This guy got in the picture. It speaks for itself.|
|Carlingford, Ireland - known to have the last leprechauns|
|Carlingford, Ireland - John's Castle|
|Church in Carlingford, Ireland|
|Another church on my walk through Carlingford, Ireland|
|John's Castle again...apparently he has a lot of these in Ireland|
|Main Street in Carlingford, Ireland (our B&B was a 2 minute walk away(|