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To make it easier to read about our trip to Ireland, I have made a page that is just for that. There is a tab above for Ireland Trip 2014 or click on the Home tab to read my other posts. I have also created a new page for My Weight Loss Journey if you are interested in that, click on the tab above.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Ireland #12 Kilcatten Lodge, Kinsale and Kissing the Blarney Stone

After a long day of driving and hiking,
we checked in to our B&B
The Kilcattan Lodge where we were 
welcomed by Noreen 
and Dave instantly made a couple new friends.
After getting settled in our rooms and getting some 
recommendations, we were off for Kinsale.
On past trips, this was one of Dave's and my favorite towns
and we were so looking forward to another visit.
Here is the harbor.  As you can see this is  going to be 
a much busier town than most of where we had been.
Of course with this ship "replica" 
Roxie and Ed had to do a Titanic imitation.
We had dinner at Jim Edwards and enjoyed it immensely.
Here we all are, enjoying each others company
and having a few laughs.
Check out Ed's mustache.  
Beer foam, guess that's a problem when you have a mustache like his.
We loved the food and the company!
A great ending to a great day!
The next morning we were treated to the best breakfasts 
we had had so far.
Here's what a couple of us had.
Traditional Irish - Eggs, sausage, bacon (ham to us in the States) 
black and white pudding and tomatoes for some.
Eggs, bacon and toast for another.
Eggs and toast with salmon for another.
And french toast with bananas
And that wasn't all, there was also a beautiful variety of
fresh fruit to choose from.
The breakfasts at B&Bs are generally wonderful
and very filling.  Some places offer a large variety
and others not as much, but they are all wonderful and filling.
Every B&B offers a traditional Irish breakfast and
often also has cereal, yogurt or fruit to go with it.
This was by far the best selection we had.
Can you tell I was already enamored with Kilcatten Lodge?
Once we were fortified with a filling breakfast we were off for 
another day of adventures.
We were off to kiss the Blarney Stone!
Here's my selfie with Blarney Castle in the distance.
Now I don't know how much you know about the Blarney Stone.
I've been there before and kissed it before and the first time I had no idea what
I was going to be doing.
I just thought it was some big rock in a field or something.
You have to climb stairs up to the top of an old castle that 
is quite in ruins.
Then you lay down, hang your head out a hole and kiss the 
stone on the outside of the castle.
Yes, really!
Look way up at the top of that tower,
see that little white spot above the windows?
That's where you have to hang out and kiss the stone.
Here is a closer look.
Now it really isn't as bad as it sounds.
It used to be a bit more dangerous, but they put in 
solid iron bars to keep people from falling,
and there are people there to help you.
This isn't the best video and it isn't one of the 
Celtic Adventurers kissing the stone,
but it gives you an idea of how it's done.
Legend is that if you kiss the Blarney Stone
you are imbued with the gift of gab.
Well, I've kissed it twice, so you know I must be 
quite the talker.
So this time, I passed on the experience.
The other 5 went on up, but I was just not up for 
the climb up the stairs.
That long hike yesterday about did me in and
on this particular day, walking was not my friend.
And climbing up a few flights of stairs was 
just not in the cards.
Like I said, I've done it before and
I know I already have the gift of gab.
While the others were kissing away,
I took a stroll around the ground.
One of the places I explored was 
The Poison Garden.
Yep, that's right, the plants growing in this garden are poison.
Hence the warning that children must be accompanied at all times.
There were many plants like this that we inside 'domes'
Inside this dome were the Opium Poppy plants
There were many that we know of from the 
Harry Potter Series.
Some of those I saw 
(not all of them used by Harry and friends) 
Mandrake, Larkspur, Nightshade, Cannabis,
Henbane, Monkshood 
and one many of us eat during the summer
Rhubarb. Obviously what we eat isn't poisonous,
but the leaves of the rhubarb plant are very toxic.
I thought this sign was very interesting.
Exploring the Poison Garden wasn't just about the plants.
There were some other interesting places to check out.

Walking along this garden wall was wonderful.
At one point I looked up at the castle tower and 
could see the other Celtic Adventurers waiting their 
turn to kiss the stone.
Yep, that little tiny red bit at the top is Roxie!
And if I looked out from the wall, away from the castle,
this is what I saw.
Beautiful, isn't it?

When the others came down we took a walk around.
We found some interesting trees.

Don't have a clue what this is, but isn't it
Had to have a selfie with my hubby!
Can you imagine living in a place like this?
This is a private house and can only be toured at certain 
times.  We weren't there at the right time, so 
we just have a picture of us in front of it.
We got some interesting angles of the castle on the walk back.

And found some lovely gardens.

And we stopped a few minutes to enjoy a bit of music.


Flowers of the Day

There were plenty of flowers around Blarney Castle.
Many of them in the Poison Garden.
Did you know that the beautiful Hydrangea is poisonous?
Didn't stop me from shooting them though,
they were just amazing!

Right near the exit, they had these hanging planters
filled with so many gorgeous colors, I couldn't
resist taking a few pictures!

Just look at how big these hanging planters were!

Then we were off to explore Middleton, but 
that's for the next post.

Thanks for stopping by today.
Keep coming back, there's a lot more to tell y'all.

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