We woke up and sat outside on the small outdoor patio of our apartment for a few moments, watching the workers driving to work, shopkeepers opening the metal grates over their windows.
Our plan was to walk east to the bus rail station, buy a ticket to Kilkenney. No reason to really go to Kilkinney other than I’d had a beer named after the city as well as it being on the road to Cork.
Walking a couple blocks yielded what we thought was just a bakery. There were shelves of baked goods in the entry room, visible from the road, but further back, it opened up into a serve yourself buffet.
Tray after tray of eggs (poached even!), sausages, basically a fry up deconstructed and you were left to assemble it yourself.
I finally saw porridge but I elected to skip the mushy bowl o’ oats and instead savor blood sausage.
My mom elected to get Irish breakfast tea, which I’d seen her drink many times. It made me smile that she was in Ireland drinking this tea with me.
Following the river, we arrived to the bus station. Again, no matter if the conductor points towards a track, gives you the departure time, I methodically confirmed this several times. Look at the ticket, terminal #, bus name…
Ireland is very green and rocky. It was gorgeous and surprisingly flat, not too many rolling hills or mountains.
It rained off and on during our trip, I sure hoped for a dry arrival.
We arrived to a small depot direct from a movie. It was a small, shed like structure,
I had the thought that since we were there to get our next day’s ticket to Cork, but I didn’t see a ticket agent, guess it was after hours or maybe they just relied more on internet sales these days.
It was lightly drizzling as we exited the depot, we hadn’t booked a room yet as we followed my travel style of just finding a place to stay upon arrival.
This was a horrible idea in hard rain, we ran down the main street of the city, stopping in a couple of places that advertised rooms, all full.
We arrived at what was an upscale hotel chain with a couple very pretty ladies behind the counter. They too were booked solid, yet one of them took up our cause.
‘Just let me ring a couple of places, luv, I’ll be back with ya,’ she said with a big smile.
Only 2 phone calls and we had a spot! As if it were a sign, the rain let up as soon as we exited the hotel, offering our sincere thanks as we left. She’d found one of the best places we’d stay on our tour of Ireland.
I’m pretty sure my mom took down her name to send a thank you to the corp office letting them know what a great worker they had at their Kilkenny location. If there is one thing I know, writing letters and thank you cards is what my mom does.
To my shock, it was a pub, Billy Byrnes, but they had ‘rooms in the back.’
The place had a very cool vibe to it, almost out of an old Western, though clearly we were in a small town in Ireland.
We were greeted by the absolutely most beautiful lady I’d seen. Long curly black hair was tied off via scruncy, the bit of hair past her neck poofed out a bit.
She was wearing yoga pants and without getting too creepy, she clearly was fit and had to have yoga’ed and any other activity to chisel her frame into near perfect form.
Of course this lady’s accent was thick and sexy, like buttery syrup. I did what I could to not stare as well as make some sort of joke.
If ever I encounter a pretty lady, the realist side of me says just make her laugh, don’t try to hit on her or anything, share a laugh, that’s always a win.
Happy to report I succeeded in making the lass laugh, mission accomplished.
After stowing our things and watching the still hard rain for a while, we had laid out a plan of action to Blarney, Cork and beyond.
Still early, we headed out looking for a dinner spot as well as to see this wonderful city.
If there is an Irish equivalent to Norman Rockwall, this would be one of the town’s he would likely have painted. It just felt like everything great about Ireland.
We paused for several pictures once we arrived to a bridge over the River Nore.
There was, of course, a castle, because that’s just a thing over here no matter the size of the town. Or should it be towne?
We located an Italian restaurant a short walk from the bridge. It smelled great, like fresh-baked bread.
I hd forgotten how close we were to the sea, seafood pasta would have been great here.
Alas, I was still in land lock mode and opted for pasta with meatballs. My mom ordered a fish with pasta dish, the fish served on a wooden board.
She won tonight’s meal battle for best dish by far. Whenever I go out to eat, I strive to order the most appetizing meal at the table. It keeps things interesting.
We ended the evening at our pub’s hotel. It looks like we’d just missed a show, singer songwriter guy.
This place seemed perfect to see an ethereal lady singing. In fact, this place seemed like a destination for a lot of locals ready to have a pint, a laugh and a show.
It had been a wet but fun day. We were tired and needed to rest up.
Beer: Costellos The Red
Song: Clannad Theme from Harry’s Game