Saturday, May 9, 2015

Day One of Shades of Ireland trip

Just two weeks ago I woke up in Belfast, Ireland... what a dream come true... to get to spend 13 days in the land of my forefathers.. it truly was like going home... I have always loved genealogy, and have always known from my earliest age that my Grandma was Irish.. her maiden name being Higgins... I grew up hearing all kinds of tales about her grandfather who was a great teller of tales and was a very jovial fellow.. that he often hosted horse races at his farm on his own personal track... for horse- racing was in his blood... The word was that our branch of the Higgins clan hailed from around the Waterford area. I was sure to to plan a visit there, mind you, for I wanted to see as much of the homeland as I could!
But first, I should start at the beginning!Our first stop
was Dublin, following our red eye flight from Philly,
We had heard that one must jump right in to make the
most of that first day to alleviate the jet lag... so I was
anxious to get out and do some sight-seeing.. I was
interested in, first of all, seeing the Ha'Penny bridge
and walking across the Liffey River...

then winding our way through the Temple Bar District to
Parliament Street and around the corner to a wee place I had found online... very highly rated...a tea room called
Queen of Tarts.

I had read on Trip Advisor about the farm fresh
offerings and knowing it was sort on our way to
Trinity College it seemed like a great choice..

and it was... a great friend who had joined our group of travellers agreed this was such a quaint first stop in fair city of Dublin!

And so I enjoyed my first cup of Irish tea with my lunch!
And you can see the farm fresh goodness on the plate!

That is a potato leek soup, and the sandwich had beets, brie, and a delish onion marmalade with a fresh side salad! I topped my lunch off with a fresh baked strawberry macaroon.

You can see this is a quite small and busy establishment and they had a fine bakery, too I could have lingered, but we had far to go.. So now that we had recharged our batteries we were on to one of Dublin's finest sites.... Trinity College... quite a classical university that draws students from around the world and it contains the monastic writing of the first four books of the New Testament. the Gospels,Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

Through the main gate of the campus one is at once enamored with the lovely masonry and stone facades.

There was some construction going on but it was pretty easy to follow the groups who like we were looking for the library!

This library is still in use today at the college... The highest shelves are reached by long ladders... Huh... Id have to ask the librarian for help for sure!

The classics were definitely honored here. but more than that the Book of Kells was cherished.A centuries old copy of the the 4 Gospels written by Benedictine Monks on lambskin.. and painted in gorgeous calligraphy and drawings ...

We walked quite a fair amount that first day.. breaking in my feet and legs for the days to come... rather grisly stuff this...Now our daughter told me, don't take photos of stuff you can find online... take photos of the details to prove you were there.... so here a few detail shots!

I at first noticed the intricacies of the lampposts..
Grafton Street was the fashion district was pedestrian only... I couldnt believe the number of people out everywhere in Dublin!

I preferred Nassau Street.. where you could find genealogical interests, woolen shops, linen and gift shops.

I found I was greatly interested in the rooftops of buildings... the chimneys and the various shapes and sizes!

You'll see more of these as the days progress, for I will share a day of our trip, One day at a time!
As we toured around the city by bus we enjoyed some of the outlying neighborhoods.. the charm of the row houses.

The date was April 14.. Spring was just starting in Dublin...although the weather was mild and mostly sunny for the entire trip!.I enjoyed  the   various
church edifices.. these spires dominated the horizon!

Later that evening our coach took us across Dublin to the Lansdowne Hotel for the Irish House party...
what a thrill.. this was a highlight!
if you love Celtic music and entertainment and food. then you'd love this!

Our  group  consisted of 36 half of which were  from  my church and the others     from the general area....  Lansdowne Hotel has a  huge  taven like  bar and steps down to this  gathering  room.
There  were several other  groups from all over.. some form Canada and others from Australia...

I enjoyed my  cream of asparagus soup and  brie bundle ...  cant remember   what all it was  but it was tasty!

Lynn had salmon...

And there up front was a smallish stage  where  we focused our attentioin following dinner!
The Irish HOuse Party  concept was  formulated by  our host and guitarist, Gerry Nolan, who was a  great  story teller  and musican  and there was  a  dancer/ harpist of   the  River Dance ilk,  and    a  great piper who also played the bodhran!
The following is a youtube about the IHP.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing of your trip to Ireland, I have always wanted to visit there, for now I will enjoy your photos, I smiled when I read of your daughter's advice on picture taking! These re all lovely photos, and like you I would have wanted to linger in the quaint restaurant. ~smile~
    Have a blessed Mother's Day.


Your comments are a huge blessing and encouragement to me~