Lazy, Crazy Dog Day of Summer

Trip Start Jul 16, 2011
Trip End Jul 31, 2011

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Flag of Ireland  , County Kerry,
Saturday, July 23, 2011

We didn't even set an alarm last night so we didn’t get up until 8:30. So we had a late breakfast of pancakes and fruit.  After breakfast we blogged in the sunroom and talked with other guests who were still hanging around.  We didn’t actually leave until 12:15.  This was a lazy part of the day.

Today has been grey and the clouds are hugging the tops of the mountains.  We drove east to Lispole and turned south to go see Minard’s Castle.  It is a ruin right on the ocean in a great spot to be very defensible.  After parking in the lot we went out to the beach to get a couple of pictures from there.  We couldn’t get very close to the castle as it is in danger of collapsing.  So we walked up the road behind it and then up a hiking path to get a good view from behind.

Next, we tried to find a Wedge Tomb on the summit above Doonties which is supposedly above Lispole.  Well, Doonties wasn’t on the map so we tried to find it.  We drove up the only road that headed north out of Lispole which is what Rick Steves said to do.  When we came to a junction there was no sign so we turned right – wrong move we think.  We had noticed that the hiking trail had turned right at the junction so we tried that – there were lots of hikers on the road so we thought we were on to something.  When the trail went through a field we parked the car at the farm gate and started hiking up the hill through the cow pasture with the cows in it.  They gave us some dirty looks but didn’t bother us.  We had to climb a gate to get out of the pasture and up the lane through another farm.  We saw the sign that said "Beware of Dogs," but kept going.

 Here is the crazy dog part.  As we walked by the house and barn a pack of border collies and a bull dog rushed us and one of the border collies bit me in the back of my right calf.  It hurt but did not puncture my jeans or my skin.  It did, however, scrape the top layer of skin off for about an inch and I will have a nice bruise.  I was still fine for walking so we continued on.  We talked with some hikers who had a topographic map and found out we were not near our destination.  So we decided to return to the car by way of the road.  Crazy!  It took us about 2k out of the way but we made it back. And did I mention it was raining by this time? Luckily we had taken our raincoats.  When we were down at the castle the sun was out and by the time we got up the hill the clouds had rolled in, obscured the top even more, and it started to sprinkle.  We got back to the car, retraced our steps and returned to Pax House where I washed my leg, applied antibiotic cream and a telfa pad.  I always bring first aid with me.  We think the fact that I was using hiking poles may have aggravated the dogs to attack.

It was now almost 3:00 and we hadn’t had lunch, just a couple of biscuits.  So we drove into Dingle and went to the The Dingle Pub and had toasted sandwiches with chips and vedge.  And of course Erin had beer, Harp this time and I had a Harp lager shandy.  We watched the end of the time trial today at the Tour de France.  Erin was disappointed that Andy Schleck lost the yellow jersey.  I could care less.  Erin was grateful I agreed to watch, but I have been sitting here writing the blog while she watched the TV and her updates on her phone.

We did some shopping and then went back to Pax House for a few hours to relax, take showers etc.  We did some research for tomorrow and talked to some of the people staying here.  It has been hard to skype home as the wifi area is common area and we don’t want to disturb anyone else.  Tonight we are going out to O’Sullivan’s Courthouse Pub to hear some music.  It was recommended by one of the shopkeepers who is goes there also.  We tried to skype Larry but got no answer.

We went to town about 8:45 and arrived at 9:00 and the band was just setting up.  Right away we noticed that the guitar player is the same one who was playing with the fiddle last night and we almost left.  It’s a good thing we didn’t. because the flute player was excellent and the guitar player could really sing.  They played a few songs and then took a break.  After the break they were joined by fiddle player (not the one from last night), a pipes player, and the flutist also played the pipes.  These were not the bagpipes but something similar.  They were really good and really loud.  We stayed until 10:30.  Then we went to the Small Bridge Bar but the musicians were on a break.  So we went to the Dingle Pub and the same musicians from Murphy’s last night were there so we just walked out.  We went back to the Little Bridge Bar and the musicians were playing, the fiddle player from last night with a different guitarist.  This bar was really hopping with groups of young women out for “Hen Parties” with the bride to be and groups of young men out for stag parties.  They really go all out for these parties.  One was themed on pirates and the young ladies were all dressed accordingly.  Most of the people in this bar were young people and in and out and dancing etc.  We left there about midnight and headed back to Pax House just a kilometer away.  Last night and again tonight there was a kind of light show going on in Dingle.  There was an array of shafts of white light rotating into the sky.  Tonight it was more impressive as it was foggy.  When we got back we blogged a little, packed a little and downloaded pictures.  Then bed.
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Toni on

What fun - Love to hear good Irish music.

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