Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I'm in Ireland!

A 50 year old dream has come true! I am in the land of leprechauns! We arrived in Dublin  yesterday after a long flight. We were supposed to leave at 10:40 pm, but there were mechanical problems with the plane and so we had a two hour delay. We flew all night to find sunshine in Ireland. We rented our car and began a perilous journey north.I say perilous because it was absolutely dangerous! Mr. J first had to drive from the right side of the car which meant shifting with his left hand (Yes, the cars are standard shift!) He hasn't driven a standard shift for years and on the right side of the car for forty-four years. But that was only the beginning while we were still in the parking lot.

Out on the street, if you can call them streets, (they are more the size of sidewalks) he had to drive on the left. Now I know why they have small cars here. Our car at home wouldn't fit on the sidewalk size street. We did fairly well finding our way north until just before Belfast when we took a wrong exit off a roundabout (that is pronounced (runedeboot). We did a merry-go-round, and round and round on the roundabout several times trying to decide which exit to take and finally took the wrong one. But I'm sure we gave several Irish people a good laugh. Soon we found ourselves in the middle of heavy traffic in some city (we didn't even know which) without a clue which way to go. Mr. J rolled down his window at a stop light and asked the red headed Irishman next to us how to get to Belfast. He smiled and asked if that was our destination. Mr. J told him we were going to Bangor and he said, "Just follow me for 15 minutes." Bless his Irish heart.

As we followed over hill and over dale, through narrow (Have I stressed narrow enough?) roads, Mr. J accidentally turned on the windshield wipers and couldn't get them turned off. So with wipers wiping nothing, we rode through stone lined streets and green hedges and finally arrived. (After about ten minutes he managed to turn the wipers off!) I don't even know the man's name, but as he left us he said, "I could tell by the accent you needed help, and a little hospitality never hurts!" A little!!! It was a lot and we prayed for the good man last night!

We found D8 and her family in a delightful little cottage called Silvercrest Mews. I've always loved how they name their homes here. I think we should all do it. Doesn't saying "I live in Silvercrest Mews," rather than "I live at 140 North" sound much more enticing? It adds zest to dull life. We found a wonderful restaurant called New Orleans Papa Joes. Now talk about Irish! But the food was fantastic and with an Irish twist to creole cooking. I had a vegetarian tart that was amazing and the garlic and herb potatoes were delicious.

Then we took a ride to the shore line and watched the sun go down on the Irish Sea. Gorgeous but cold. We came from 90 degree heat into 60 degree weather. We were tired after no sleep all night in the plane but it was a wonderful beginning to our stay in the land of rainbows and pots of gold.

Hope your days are also full of rainbows. Just for fun leave a comment telling what you would name your home.

(I'll post pictures as soon as Mr. J has time to load them!)


Miss Amy said...

I would name it my Italian Bungalow. :)

Lesley said...

How exciting that you are in Ireland... land of my birth (Belfast to be exact). It was fun to read about your driving adventure. I'm hoping (planning) to be in Ireland next summer. As far as my cottage is concerned.. I'll be thinking of a name; in the meantime I can tell you that my car has a name... Silver Bullet :-)

Anonymous said...

I'm so excited you're in Ireland. My grandparents are from there and my mother grew up in Boston in the Back Bay Irish neighborhood. I've always wanted to go, haven't made it yet, but love the stories. My oldest daughter went two years ago, and loved every minute. The locals thought she was local until she spoke, and then wanted to know what it was like in the "states". Apparently she looks very Irish, with her strawberry blonde hair and fair complexion. If I had a home there, I would call it Heather Row. Don't know why, but agree it sounds better than a house number. I hope you enjoy every second, except the driving, of course. Thanks for sharing. :-)

Bea said...

You are in Belfast/Bangor!!!!!!!
Nuf said

Wendi said...

That driving adventure sounds scary! And what a blessing to have a kind stranger help you when you needed it! I like the phrase "...the land of rainbows and pots of gold". I also like the name of Cathie's cottage because my daughter's name is Heather. :)

Sundy Watanabe said...

Oh, Sherrie! Ireland! Can't wait to see pictures.