Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Well underway at this stage

Hello all!

so after the last update, we grabbed the last of our stuffs and raided a friends house for a nights accomodation for the first night of the trip. We arrived in Jess's apartment bearing cheap drink and wanting nothing more than to enjoy the last night in Waterford for 5 weeks.

We chilled at the apartment before hitting Harveys. It was the monday night after a bank holiday, but it was still an amazing night out! So many people out, cheers to all the lads that made it out!

Tuesday morning we tried to make an early start at it. Enevitably there are delays. We had to get a tyre changed on the back of James' car, so we took care of that and picked up some stuff we forgot the evening before then it was some serious N25 time.

We arrived eventually in Midleton. A quick look around the distillary and a photo taken by a friendly tourist office worker, who we neglected to get a name for later, we were on the road again.

Down probably the worst section of the N25, outside Midleton along the way and turned off for Fota. Fota kindly sponsored the cost of entry, so we wandered around taking photos and have a gawk at animals we will never eat...

After grew tired of standing with our backs to the Giraffes and demanding passing tourists tell us where they are, we went to Blarney.

On the way there, we stopped in Aldi to stock up on food. Blarney Castle were also kind in sponsoring us entry to the castle. We wandered up and the sun was spliting the rocks in defiance of the weather girl. Over a wooden bridge and paused on the grass for a couple of photos. We passed an interesting looking stairway, so we decided to take a look... that was a mistake. Once it was started, we had to follow it. It went up a short bit then lead into a tunnel. This tunnel went on and on, deep and deeper in the dark depths of subterranian Blarney Castle. It reminded me a bit of the corridor the people of Spingfield put in the replacement house for Ned Flanders after it was destroyed.

After many a knock on the head to us both, the tunnel was 4 foot high, tops... we arrived at the end, where a single light provided scattered illumination across generations of graffitiiii.....

Out of this passage to hades and up the stairs that leads to the stone which constituted the purpose of our visit. Up we went.

And up.

And up.


And up...

By the time we reached the top of the spiral staircase, it was only a half person wide. We joined the queue to kiss the slime stone of the silver tongued. Before and Behind us were tourists. Many were curious to know: why did they build the castle so close to the road?

A peck each and we dismounted the castle, and took a quick glance at our images... we left them behind us. Both sets depicted a visibly terrified individual, with nothing on their mind but the drop into the abbyss...

We left here and ventured forth to Clonakilty. We arrived at Desert House Camping Caravanning and B&B, where we signed in and got our shower tokens. Desert House were extremely generous to us, sponsoring us not only the cost of the nights pitch, but also the shower tokens and four euro for the charity to round it all out.

We set up shop, and wandered into the town itself. We were surprised to find just how big clonakilty is! We had a good jaunt, finding among other things, the house Michael Collins lived in, as well as a TG4 film crew, who we got chatting to. They were in town for the tidy towns competition. I think Clon have a good shot this year, the place looks fantastic.

We got some Fish and Chips and retired to the camp site, where we sat around with musical instruments, eating cold beans straight from the can. It was GREAT.

James took a wander in to town to check out the local scene... there was a huge trad session going on, and he stayed to listen to "The Travellers Knickers" before returning and both having an early night... this better not be the story every other night!

Today we got up early enough, maybe 8ish. Had our showers, decamped and hit the road. From Clon we went straight as arrow along some seriously winding roads to Mizen Head.

The bridge to the lighthouse and signal station is currently under reconstruction, so there was no access past the visitor centre, but they sponsored us admission to look around and to learn more about the local geology and birds and history of the light house.

We came from the most southwesternly point on mainland Ireland to head North to the next county on the agenda: Kerry. We passed through a rough hewn tunnel, that could only have been ripped from the mountain it passed under, and we were met by some spectacular veiws and the "Welcome to Kerry" sign. We skidded to a stop, nearly missing it, and set the timer for the group shot.

Just on from this we stopped briefly at the Druids Veiw point, basically a giant carved wooden statue beside a shop. This could have been a good spot for another shade of green, but there was nothing visible.

Outside Killarney we stopped at Torc Waterfall and ascended to the top. There must have been at least 8 million steps on the way up. The top of the waterfall was a bit of a let down, I must say... a lot of pour concrete work.. all very artificial.

We are now sitting in an internet cafe in Killarney itself. After we finish here, we will set forth once more, this time for Dingle and the Grapevine Hostel.

Cant Wait!

We have travelled approx. 370 miles so far, and were on Day 3, having hit Midleton, Fota, Blarney, Cork, Clonakilty, Mizen Head, Bantry and Killarney.

See ye, when I see ye!


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