1 September 2011

welcome to the emerald isle

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the cheapest place to fly in all of europe (believe me, i checked for months and months) was dublin. so, ireland became my first stop. i took two overnight planes to get there and was a bit bleary for the first while, but soon found among the green and sheep and hills that bit of irish magic.

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i was giddily excited flying in and then picking up my rental car and driving on the left side again. i was giggling for the first 20 miles. i didn’t have much of an agenda – i just drove and occasionally referenced rick steves to decide on some stops.

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first stop was the rock of cashel, and old fortress set on a hill. it was like i plunged right back into ancient ireland. the site has served many purposes, and st. patrick himself came here to convert the king! i took a little tour and our guide’s accent was perfect and sounded like raw silk. i liked to imagine the structure’s grandeur, filled with pepople and music.

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easily my favourite thing about ireland is the wildflowers that are everywhere along the sides of the roads. i walked down the green sheepy mountain that the rock of cashel perches on and meandered over to more ruins past the road. no one was there and it was beautiful!

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i really honed my self-timer picture taking skills on this trip!

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next stop was muckross house, on the edge of killarney national park in county kerry. instead of going in the beautiful (fashioned for a visit from the queen!) 19th century house, i decided to roam around the gardens, which were sensational!

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i drove the first part of the famous “ring of kerry” scenic loop to see this stunning view point.

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then, i put the address of my hostel in my rented gps (which saved my life) and this is where is brought me – along this random, tiny (yes, that is two lanes), goregous road for 19 kilometers through the middle of nowhere. i had such a love/hate relationship with that narrow, windy, beautiful road!
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i meandered through back roads and along streams until i finally made it to a main(ish) road to head to the town of dingle, cruising and all the while listening to music from a cd one of my mission companions and i found under the seat in our car called “celtic romance.” perfect.

8 comments :

  1. Now then Charity I'm having a hard time equating these pictures with the tales I heard of your time in Ireand!! not a rain drop in sight! and I actually saw some sun in some of those shots - sun in Ireland?! that's unheard of! It looks so beautiful, and I can't believe you managed to take such gorgeous pics on just your little point and shoot!

    Great photography skills must run in the family! Can't wait to see the rest of your posts! xxx

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  2. SO beautiful! Can't wait to follow the rest of your journey. These pics are fantastic!

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  3. WOW that green positively hurts your eyes! That third picture is sort of scary..looks as though you're flying a plan with a big headlight over the Irish landscape. You gotta love those collages! Beauty!

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  4. i love you char and am so glad that you got on that trip.

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  5. I am insanely Jealous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love the green! I need to visit Ireland. the land of my heritage.

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  6. Charity, I hope you've read Angela's Ashes! Seeing all of your pictures makes me want to go to Ireland, and to re-read that book!

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