Sunday, September 30, 2007

We made it to Wexford, and nobody died...

...though I was more ready for a Guinness than perhaps I had ever been in my life. The pub was right down the street from the Faythe Guesthouse, stumbling distance, really, which was good. They were expecting Pete, even though no one had gotten back to his recent emails; he got to play a few songs before we got too drunk, and then he played a few more. It was a benefit for a helicopter ambulance service, held in the beergarden of the bar (Everyone has beer gardens now that you can't smoke in pubs). I was trying to keep track of Guinnesses, but I don’t have any idea of that night. I can remember seven pints, I think. I’ll never know. But judging by the hangover and the fact that we missed breakfast entirely, it was definitely more.

It was late morning when we made our way down the mainstreet to find cash and a place for coffee and breakfast. I ordered the “mini” which was an astounding amount of food. I have found that if I have a big breakfast and then perhaps a soup for late lunch, I am fine for the day. Well, plus Guinness and HobNobs, of course. Oh, and crisps.

From Wexford, we were off to find a Farmhouse Accomodation near Clonmel, near Ardfinnan. In between, we had more crumbly bits to see. I had wanted to catch a few sights around Wexford, including the Irish Agricultural Museum and the Irish National Heritage Park, but there was not going to be time. The country is the size of Indiana, but I think there might be more to see and do in Ireland, not to knock the Hoosier State.

It had been raining off and on, but by the time we reached the village of Inistioge, the rain was just "on." This is a charming village on the Nore River, where we enjoyed a ramble; I had a great bowl of potato onion garlic soup and Pete had his first scone with clotted cream. I guess the film "Circle of Friends" was filmed here, but I had not seen it. The cafe we ate in was named after the film, so I guess it must have been a big deal.

After we stuffed ourselves, we made our way to Jerpoint Abbey and arrived just before they closed.

We had been trying to buy a Heritage Card, which is good for a year and gets you into historical and park sites all over the Republic. At Glendalough, they practically discouraged it, saying that we would not get our 20 Euro out of it. I was thinking that 20 Euro seemed like a deal, and that even if we did not get that back, we would be supporting the parks and historical sites, which was fine with me. At Jerpoint, he just let us in because we only had half an hour.

After that, we went to the Kells Priory, which was an open access site, and very impressive. Then it was a ramble on tiny roads to the Farmhouse. It was getting dark by the time we found it, and we settled in.

Ber, the proprietress, set out tea for us, and we decided to sit in the tea room, have some Guinness Foreign Extra that we had bought at the Storehouse, and do a bit of planning. This was our last booked stay, and we only had an idea where we were heading, not where we would be laying our heads. Kevin, the proprietor, gave us some excellent suggestions, and we had a nice chat with him. I tried to hook up and download pictures, but the battery on the laptop fried out and the computer would do nothing--would not even turn off. So that was that. We needed a three-prong adapter, and we had not purchased one yet.

At breakfast on Sunday morning, we talked to an Irish couple who joked that the McCauleys had been sheep stealers. Which made me wonder where all the sheep were, now that I was a McCauley. I do knit, after all, and sheep could be helpful. The gentleman said that we should wonder more what they stole the sheep for.

We again were inundated with massive quantities of breakfast food and were sufficiently weighted down for the day that we were facing. Into the wild, with only a vague destination in mind.

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