2024 Ireland Adventure: Introduction

 How the trip came into being

If my memory serves correctly (and events around that time are admittedly a little fuzzy), just before Robert's passing I was texting with a couple of my sisters when we concocted the idea of going somewhere. One of my sisters mentioned Hawaii and I said, "What about Ireland?" And there we were. My Cooper SIL had a tour reserved with Vagabond and Driftwood Tours of Ireland in 2023 but had to cancel so she had credit she needed to use before August 2024. I suggested Driftwood to my sisters, we picked a date and started planning. I decided to stay another week after our 6-day Great Southern Tour so my SIL made plans to meet me and go on another tour with me. 

Decisions, Decisions

We had decisions to make, the first one being which Driftwood Tour to take. The one we wanted was full for the date we wanted so we chose the Great Southern Tour. Robert & I visited some of the places but I was definitely okay with revisiting, and there were plenty of places we didn't see.

I've said that if you go to Ireland, you shouldn't take a tour, but...Y'ALL! This was definitely the way to go! They only do small group tours and go places "off the beaten path". There were a couple of places I didn't think I could have found or would have known anything about. Plus the convenience of just showing up at the front of the hotel with our suitcase at the designated time was incredible. We didn't have to worry about anything

Back to decisions...

I went with 2 of my sisters' airline preferences...Delta. I wasn't thrilled about it, but it turned out to be great. Since 1 sister doesn't live where we do, we met up at the Atlanta airport. 
The 3 of them were in the middle row, I was right next to them...with an empty seat between me and the window seat person. Plenty of room to not worry if my blanket or pillow (or anything else) was getting in someone's way. 

Once in Dublin, we easily found Border Control. (Following other people helps a bunch) I think our plane was the only one in line so it was amazingly quick. Then we found the taxi queue and we were off to the hotel. Our taxi driver was wonderful. He talked about things we were seeing and told us they have a special name for dandelions: Pee the Beds. (although he didn't say "pee"!) They were told as children that if they picked a dandelion they would pee the bed that night. A quick Google search tells me that the French word for dandelion is pissenlit, which means (you guessed it)...pee the bed.


Only 1 of us slept on the plane and it wasn't me. I felt so bad after a couple of hours in Dublin, but I didn't feel "tired", just "bad". Our first stop was the Long Hall Pub but I forgot to take pictures (again). It was around lunch time and they didn't serve food so the barman sent us to The Hairy Lemon. This was the place that had the horrendous Irish Coffee last trip. It was interesting to be there again; I knew it as soon as I spotted it and remembered exactly where we sat and where the restrooms were. The last time, it was evening and was crowded so we didn't look around the place. I was amazed at how much space was in that building. I still wasn't impressed with the food, but maybe because I just wasn't hungry. Nah, their french fries weren't good at all. 
We walked over to Trinity College, which was close by. It took us forever to figure out how to get in. There's a lot of construction going on and my thought was that they had entrances blocked off to keep people from cutting through the grounds. So, we walked around a bit and found the opening. 1 of my sisters ended up going into the Book of Kells; I really wanted my sisters to see the Long Hall Library but you couldn't do 1 without the other and it was pretty pricy to get in. The sister that went in said that they are getting ready to close the library for 2 years for major renovations and most of the books had already been taken out. So, I was glad we didn't fork out the money to be disappointed.

At that point, we decided to go back to the hotel. 1 of my sisters & I crashed for a couple of hours and I think the other 2 went to the bar. We enjoyed watching Leinster play Leicester in Rugby on the tv. The hotel is on the same road as the stadium so there were a lot of fans stopping in for food and drink on their way to the match. We got to experience "flirty Irishmen" right off the bat: there was a man selling Leinster hats & scarves and he cozied up to one of my sisters.
Dinner at the hotel was amazing: Guiness Beef Stew with Pints. 1 of my sisters commented on how good the Guiness was, but I told her to just wait...that wasn't the best one she'd have!
The Ireland Adventure was off to a "grand" start! Check back for more posts, and check out Flyin' the Coop for more detailed, travel-related posts on this trip.

1 comment:

  1. How wonderful to do this trip with your sister's. Looking forward to hearing more about it.


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