Blarney Castle, Co. Cork : Travel Reminiscences

10 day self-drive tour of Ireland : October 2009

I had done a post on our visit to Blarney Castle , on our return,  so this is a photo-journey through part, a very small part, of the 60 acre parkland surrounding the castle, the castle itself and climbing 127 narrow spiral steps to the top of the castle to kiss the Blarney Stone, which both hubby and I did, bestowing upon us the gift of eloquence .. yay!!

Copy of P1080911- 60 acres of parkland and gardens - Blarney Castle

Copy of P1080905- River MartinCopy of P1080910

Copy of P1080907- Blarney Castle parkland and gardens

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Making a wish .. throwing coins in the river …

Copy of IMG_9521-making a wish while throwing coin in River MartinCopy of IMG_9487-Blarney CastleCopy of IMG_9488Copy of IMG_9496Copy of IMG_9498Copy of P1080869-Blarney CastleCopy of P1080870Copy of P1080894Blarney Stone – above the smallest window at the top of the keep which was built in 1446 by Dermot McCarthy
Chappie sitting with feet on railing is the one who holds you while you kiss the stone …

Copy of P1080896- there's the chap who holds onto youCopy of IMG_9501-Blarney Castle

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There’s the chappie, and his assistant, waiting for his next ‘victims’ .. us !!

Copy of Copy of IMG_9514I posted hubby’s photo on my BlogSpot blog .. sooo this is me  kissing the Blarney Stone ..

Copy of IMG_9508-Kissing the Blarney Stone

Collages103From Blarney we drove to Mizen Head via Bantry Bay …

Posted in autumn, birds, castles, Co. Cork, countryside, holiday, Ireland, memory lane, ruins, travel, trees | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Throwback Thursdays : picture quality 1972-74

Most of my Throwback Thursdays pics will be from way-way-back-when … when we were young … when photo developing was not that good … when I decided that ‘matt’ finish photos were great (as it turns out they’re not .. years later :( ) … when many of my photographs have turned brown due to poor quality 35mm films … when there were only 12, 24 or 36 exposures … when you had to be rather choosy on what you wanted to photograph … when if someone wasn’t smiling, turned away at that precise moment, or closed their eyes, you couldn’t click another, and another, and another until you got the perfect shot … … … …

Todays ‘way-back-when’  pics are …  still focuses on  Jeanette .. when we, our little family, were three

IMG_2695- Nov 72 - J 5mths

Jeanette - 10mths April 73

IMG_2698-  Feb 74

IMG_2699- March 74Jeanette on toy horse - Dec 74

Xmas Day 1974 P,A&J


J & Michelle - Xmas Day 74

How sad is that .. to have all our most of our ‘memories’  badly printed :(   I’ve kept all of the negatives.   Those with perfect colour can, I suppose, be reprinted but the yellowed/browned ones can’t as the negatives have also turned brown :(   Very poor quality 35mm film

Posted in cousins, family, Jeanette, me, memory lane, P and me, photography, Throwback Thursdays | Tagged | Leave a comment

Cork, Co. Cork : Travel Reminiscences

10 day self-drive tour of Ireland : October 2009

Hubby and I had a two-night stopover in the city of Cork .. and there again, as in Waterford, we didn’t spend much time in the city itself except for a walk-about near the hotel.   Two nights in one place only leaves one full day scouting the area, as we see places of interest en route to and from .. to our next destination.

On our full day in Cork, we visited Blarney Castle .. kissed the Blarney Stone of course,  drove through beautiful countryside to Mizen Head, the most south-westerly tip of Ireland, back along the coast to Kinsale .. then to Cork – a full day’s sightseeing.  We missed one or two places (including Cobh and the Titanic memorial) but one can’t see and do everything!

Hubby picked a super hotel (he’s the seeker-of-hotels-in-foreign-lands!)   … the Clarion Hotel.   .. and to top it all we had a fabulous room on the 2nd floor .. a corner suite


P1080825- Cork

P1080857- Foyer of Clarion Hotel

Central atrium .. P1040503

P1040500- central atrium in Clarion Hotel


Breakfast room ..

P1040519P1040517-' Do not disturb' - Clarion HotelP1040499P1040483- Clarion Hotel - CorkP1040487P1040492


P1040489- from room window - City Hall - River Lee (South Channel)P1040490P1040485


P1040510Surrounding area around the Clarion Hotel ..   City Hall

P1080829- City Hall - opp Clarion Hotel


IMG_9474- River Lee (South Channel)

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Oliver Plunkett Street ..

P1080854- Oliver Plunkett StreetIMG_9477- Oliver Plunkett Street - CorkSt Patrick’s Street ..




P1080834- St Patrick's Street - Cork

There’s a park at the end of Oliver Plunkett Street on the Grand Parade, where there is a weekly Saturday market.  Unfortunately we got there as they were packing up ..

P1080842- Grand Parade - at end of Oliver Plunkett StreetP1080843-we missed all the singing - a street market is held on Sat's P1080844P1080846



P1080851- buskers - typical in all cities in Ireland P1080852



On our first evening in Cork we had a delicious meal at Kudos, an Asian restaurant in the Clarion.  On our second evening, and last in Cork, we asked the concierge for a recommendation for a typical Irish restaurant.  In hindsight, we should have just gone down to the one of the pubs in town, but he referred us to a place belonging to a relation of his.  Well .. not an Irish dish in sight – it was Mediterranean :(  I think the only typically Irish thing about it was the owner!!    Food was good but not what we had in mind, but we had walked so far to get there we decided to stay.   We crossed the North Channel of the River Lee over St Patrick’s Bridge …

P1040530- River Lee (North Channel) - St Patrick's Bridge P1040531-North Channel of River Lee - Cork P1040532-St Patrick's Bridge -I think


Sunrise on the morning we left Cork for our next stopover .. Adare, Co. Limerick .. via the Ring of Dingle

P1080859P1080861-early morning - Cork


Posted in Co. Cork, holiday, hotels, Ireland, memory lane, reflections, rivers and canals, street, sunrise, travel | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Rock of Cashel, Co. Tipperary : Travel Reminiscences

10 day self-drive tour of Ireland : October 2009

Our next stop after Cahir Castle in County Tipperary was the Rock of Cashel .   As with Cahir Castle I had done a post in my previous BlogSpot blog in Nov 2009 – linked on highlighted ‘Rock of Cashel’ .  I may use and enlarge some pics from that blog post.   On the way …  following GPS directions that took us on frequent ‘country sightseeing ‘ jaunts …  including this farm road where a cow burst through a hedge and ran down the road, followed by another who seemed a little bewildered with his unexpected escape  …

P1080760- on way to Rock of Cashel

P1080761- Jane a little confused!

We had wonderful weather in Ireland when hubby and I were there, except for this particular day, and the day we went to Bunratty Castle in Co. Clare,  when it drizzled or rained on and off.

The town of Cashel ..



P1080767Remains of Hore Abbey, a 13th century Cistercian abbey ..

P1080768The Rock of Cashel, a rocky stronghold, was a symbol of royal and priestly power for more than a millennium


‘ From the 4th and 5th century it was the seat of the Kings of Munster, whose kingdom extended over much of southern Ireland.   In 1101, the handed Cashel over to the Church, and it flourished as a religious centre until a siege by a Cromwellian army 1647 culminated in the massacre of its 3 000 occupants.  The cathedral was finally abandoned in the late 18th century.’  ‘ A good proportion of the medieval complex is still standing and Cormac’s Chapel is one of the most outstanding examples of Romanesque architecture in the country.‘   Eyewitness Travel : Ireland



IMG_9429P1080772Isn’t Ireland just too beautiful !!!   Sooo green!!   The saying goes ..’ it’s so green it hurts your eyes’ !    Over yonder is rain coming.  We were hoping we wouldn’t get caught in it but we did.    Some pics have speckled raindrops on them



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28m (92ft) round tower (built c.1100)  is the oldest and tallest building on the rock, enabled Cashel’s inhabitants to scour the surrounding plain for potential attackers ..


O’Scully Monument .. a memorial erected in 1870 by a local landowning family.  The very large High Cross was struck by lightening in 1976.  The stones of the cross lie near the wall ..









Cormac’s Chapel .. chapel of King Cormac MacCarthaigh was begun in 1127 and consecrated in 1134 … superb Romanesque carving adorns the chapel …

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Copy of the original St Patrick’s Cross, which stood on this spot until 1982 and is now in the museum.  St Patrick visited Cashel in 450 …

P1080797-replica of St Patrick's Cross

In the museum .. the original 12th century St Patrick’s Cross ..

IMG_9456 -St Patrick's Cross - 12th Century

Cashel bell (9th century) (I love it!)    :  12th century Cashel Crozier


9th/10th century Cashel brooch ..


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Bronze Age axes ..




Next post of Cork … in my Ireland’s Travel Reminiscences

Posted in birds, church, Co. Tipperary, countryside, holiday, Ireland, memory lane, rain, ruins, travel | Tagged | 2 Comments

Boys rated my hamburgers ..

Sooo… my grandsons, Bradley and Connor, rated my hamburgers on a par – or just about anyway – with Wimpy!!!!   I was shocked !!!   .. and dismayed :(

Does this look like a Wimpy hamburger ?  !!   Succulent beef patty served on fresh lettuce, topped with sliced tomato and a dash of tomato sauce – nothing fancy but tasty  (hubby and I had them today for lunch)

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I’ve often make homemade burgers for a Sunday lunch if I just cannot think of anything else to serve.  My family have always loved my burgers.  I use fresh free-range extra lean mince .. add crushed garlic, grated onion, herbs, salt and pepper.  Mix with egg, dash of flour and breadcrumbs.  Herbs are always fresh from the garden ie thyme, marjoram and origanum plus parlsey.  The latter is not from the garden as, for some reason, I cannot grow parsley!!!!

I pan-fry them with a little Extra Virgin oil in a le Creuset skillet

A week or so ago Jeanette’s blog post was about the boys rating hamburgers

Connor voted mine equal … equal !!!  to Wimpy ;    Bradley voted mine above Wimpy … just !!

I never eat bought hamburgers (except when on a road trip when there’s nothing else edible-looking to eat)   Hubby has them occasionally and always has one on road trips when stopping for a bite to eat at midday.

I think, no matter where I am rated by the boys, I will continue to make patties my way :)    why should I change ;)


Posted in Bradley, Connor, food, grandchildren | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Cahir Castle, Co. Tipperary : Travel Reminiscences

10 day self-drive tour of Ireland : October 2009

I love castles !!!


I have done a post on Cahir Castle – posted in Nov 2009.   It was on my previous BlogSpot and the photographs are quite small.  I may include the odd pic or two with this post .. enlarged a bit

P1080704-Cahir Castle-Co Tipperary

Cahir Castle was built on a rocky island in the River Suir in 1142 by Conor O’Brien, Prince of Thomond.  In the late 14th century it was granted to the powerful Butler family, who enlarged and remodelled it between 15th and 17th century.  It fell into ruin in the late 18th century and was later partially restored

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IMG_9388- Cahir Castle

River Suir ..

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The Great Hall (on right of pic below) was rebuilt in 1840 ..

IMG_9397P1080741Inside the Great Hall ..











The market town of Cahir (was once a garrison and mill town) ..

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IMG_9419- town of Cahir in background

P1080754- River Suir



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Next stop … Rock of Cashel, symbol of royal and priestly power for more than a millennium


Posted in autumn, castles, Co. Tipperary, countryside, holiday, Ireland, memory lane, rivers and canals, ruins, travel, trees | Tagged | Leave a comment

Ho hum .. I have a dilemna

I’m running out of space on WordPress :(      I don’t know how many more photographs and stories I can squeeze onto my current WordPress blog

Blog stuff 23

Do I pay an annual fee to continue on WordPress or do I ask Bryan to set up my own website ?   I like the back-up of WordPress, which I find easy to use.   Seeing I am computer illiterate, will I have to keep running to Bryan for help when I click on the wrong thing and cause chaos on my blog!!!!!!!

What to do .. what to do … … …


Posted in Ireland, learning curve, me | 4 Comments