Trifecta in Cork County

Trip Start Feb 22, 2008
Trip End Mar 01, 2008

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Friday, February 29, 2008

(Erica) Today is our last full day in Ireland so we made the most of it! We started a bit early and ate breakfast at McGillcuddy's Pub before we started our drive. 1st stop...Cork. We arrive in Cork and decide to visit the St. Ann Cathedral and the local Market. After a few wrong turns and u-turns we arrive at the Cathedral...just to find out we were exploring St. Mary's Cathedral - not St. Ann's...ha! Par for the course - what can I say. After finding a bathroom (imagine a few more wrong turns and u-turns) we decide we've had enough of Cork and head to our next stop - Cobh.

Cobh sits on a large island in Cork harbor. Since our ancestry is Irish - we learned there's a good chance that this town was the last Irish soil our ancestors had under their feet. Cobh was the major port of Irish emigration in the 19th century. We checked out the Heritage Center where we learned about Anne Moore and her 2 younger brothers. She was 15 and trying to get to America to meet up with her parents and older brother. She and her younger brothers were the first Irish emigrants to land at Ellis Island and were given 10 shillings. Then we walked through town to see the Lusitania Memorial, the Titanic pier (at least the pier to catch the ferry to where the Titanic was docked) and many other sites along the promenade. We stopped a local to find the Titanic Memorial and he filled us in with a 10-minute explanation of the area yet new nothing about this Titanic Memorial. Ha! Either way it was great talking with him.

Next stop...Kinsale. Kinsale is a naturally sheltered bay harbored by a huge 17th century star fort (which we are so bummed we did NOT see since we ran out of time) which has history from the Spanish Armada to Robinson Crusoe to the Lusitania. We hadn't eaten since breakfast and it was now 5pm when arrived in Kinsale - so we made a B-line to The Little Skillet restaurant. This is a place we found in our Rick Steve's book and when we arrived we learned they opened an hour later. Somehow my mom and I find energy to do more shopping while Tom heads to the pub for a Guinness.

In our shopping spree - we stumble across Kinsale Crystal and get a private demo from Thomas of how crystal glass is cut. The history he gave us into the shop and the process involved to cut glass was phenomenal and definitely a highlight of the day!

We eventually meet Tom back at the restaurant an hour later and enjoy a fabulous dinner with Martina's wonderful hospitality (Martina is the owner of the restaurant). She fills us in on Kinsale and shares some good stories. We finish our delicious dinner and head out to hit the town...wait it's now 8pm and we have a 2 hour drive back to the cabin. Hmmm...touring the town gets tabled for our next trip to Ireland.

We hop in the car and attempt to find our way home. As the co-pilot/navigator - I, once again, route our way "home". Note: this means a Plan B and Plan C since Tom takes random turns for reasons I'm unsure about. Needless to say - this co-pilot/navigator task is exhausting! Ha! We make it "home" with a record low number of wrong turns and U-turns.

We're packing up and getting ready to hit the sack. Plan to wake up at 4am, leave by 5am and get to Shannon Airport by 7am. I'm thinking based on our record low number of wrong/U-turns that we might actually make it within 2 hours. We'll see...
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irassman on

Home, sweet home
YEY!!! This trip ended up being as successful as you thought it would be. Congrats on navigating in Ireland. I know this is a huge task alone!! Now that you will be back in the U.S, you can drive with your eyes many people do. :-) heehee.
Welcome home!!!


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