Jigs, Reels, and Ditties in Dingle

Trip Start Jul 17, 2013
Trip End Aug 05, 2013

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Flag of Ireland  , County Kerry,
Friday, July 26, 2013

The second stop on our trip is county Kerry, specifically the Dingle peninsula.  We are in the heart of Irish traditional music, more beautiful scenery and a place where the old Irish language is still.    spoken. All the signs are in Irish. It will be hard for me to describe the pub scene but I'll try my best.  Music generally starts at 9:30 and lasts until midnite.  Some of the pubs serve food, some do not, but of course there are lots of pints of beer being served.  As it gets closer to the music starting, the pubs fill up and there certainly doesn't seem to be any limit to the number of people that  can squeeze in.  And many are just there to drink and visit, with very little attention paid to the music.  It's a good thing we were told that the Irish just do that...we probably would have started an international incident if we'd said "shhh". One night in Dingle, we had a private concert of Lumiere, 2 women and a guitar that was just beautiful.  One night we had a TX style barbecue at Tommy O'Sullivans Courthouse Pub - authentic as his wife Sandra is from Austin/Houston.  As we finished dinner, Tommy played and sang with an amazing fiddle player, Naihm Varian-Barry and also sang a few duets with Sandra.   And since we have our own singer songwriter on our tour, Victor is always asked to play a song or two.  He chose 3 Tx tunes, a Bob  Wills song, Lyle Lovett,  and then "T is for Texas" and the fiddle player joined in not knowing the songs at all. Our last was a Dingle music pub crawl....there must be 14 pubs in this little town and we would listen outside one and decide if we wanted to go in or not. What's so great is the variety of styles...it's all Irish music, but it can have any combinations of instruments....guitar, fiddle, bodhran (Irish drum), accordian, concertina, banjo, penny whistle.
Our days on the Dingle Peninsula were spent at beautiful beaches and visiting ancient sites, and making the Slea Head drive along the coast.  Our guide, Hugh, is like a walking encyclopedia of Irish history but doesn't bore us with too many details. He plays the guitar and Paddy, our driver plays the bodhran so we've gotten to hear them both play.   We also took a little time at one of the beaches for Victor to sing a few folk  songs...some of which we could join in on the chorus.
The group of people we are with are just delightful and fun.  The 2 boys, Jacob and Asher are so well behaved and keep us entertained.  We are lucky to have someone on the trip with a good camera and who posts on FB so the best photos are hers!  The 4 of us who are not part of the family have been made honorary cousins!
The weather cooled off a bit and we've actually had rain.  But it has always been sunny for our sightseeing which is very lucky.  The locals say they haven't had a hot, sunny summer since 2007.
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Peggy on

From the landscape "eye candy" to the plentiful pubs and beer, this is definitely my home country. You guys did real good picking this trip.

Denise on

So very cool. Nice add, the music. Beautiful scenery.

Ruth on

Robin and Bill - Great news is that we've also had rain here at home! It rained - and lightninged! and thundered! - for quite a while last night. This morning, Rick Eason (the official Cianfrani's rain info officer) said he had two inches! in the gauge.
Now I'm gonna look at your pictures.

Libby on

We got back yesterday from Maine and (among other things) seeing Robert and Leslie. He looks extraordinarily good.
This trip sounds like a dream come true! I'd love to be with you.

libby on

I love reading about your trip ! sounds like everything is going great.

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