Dublin was established as a Viking settlement in the 9th century and is now the capital of the Republic of Ireland with a population of just over a half a million.
We felt it was only polite to attend the graduation reception.
The library is also the permanent home to the famous Book of Kells. Two of the four volumes are on public display, one opened to a major decorated page and the other to a typical page of text.
The illustrations and ornamentation of the Book of Kells surpass that of other Insular Gospel books in extravagance and complexity. The decoration combines traditional Christian iconography with the ornate swirling motifs typical of Insular art (style of art produced in the post-Roman history of the British Isles). Figures of humans, animals and mythical beasts, together with Celtic knots and interlacing patterns in vibrant colors, enliven the manuscript's pages. Many of these minor decorative elements are imbued with Christian symbolism and so further emphasis the themes of the major illustrations.
View of Dublin from the bar at the top of the Guinness factory - you get a free beer with the tour - we opted for a soft drink!
Molly Malone (Cockles and Mussels)The song tells the fictional tale of a beautiful fishmonger who plied her trade on the streets of Dublin, but who died young, of a fever. In the late 20th century a legend grew up that there was a historical Molly, who lived in the 17th century. She is typically represented as a hawker by day and part-time prostitute by night
Picked up my rental car the next day and headed towards Cork. First stop Waterford - maybe I can pick up some crystal - not that I have any room in my luggage. After going to the Waterford factory and finding out the factory did not do tours on Saturdays and Waterford crystal has not been produced since 2009 I decided to go to a local pub for lunch where I enjoyed a local delicacy of ribs, cabbage, potatoes and carrots. The ribs were nothing like those in North America - they tasted more like bacon and were delicious.
First we headed to the Blarney Castle where the Blarney Stone is located - looking forward to kissing that stone!
Original castle dates back to 1200. The castle looks even more dramatic because the walls slope inwards as it rises.The castle is now a partial ruin with some accessible rooms and battlements. At the top of the castle lies the Stone of Eloquence, better known as the Blarney Stone. Once at the top of the castle you may hang upside-down over a sheer drop to kiss the stone, which is said to give the gift of eloquence.
Surrounding the castle are extensive gardens. There are paths touring the grounds with signs pointing out the various attractions such as several natural rock formations which have been given fanciful names, such as Druid's Circle, Witch's Cave and the Wishing.
The difference between baloney and blarney:
Baloney - is when you tell a 50 year old woman she looks 18.
Blarney - when you ask a woman how old she is, because you want to know at what age women are most beautiful!
One of the 99 things you want to do before you die is kiss the Blarney Stone - this stone is on the castle property and looked like a good substitute to me!
One of the last stops of the day was a point where one side is the Irish Sea ( you might see England if you look really hard) and on the other side of the point is a view of the Atlantic Ocean. This is exactly how I had imagined the coast of Ireland - breathtaking.
The water is a brilliant bluish green
Beach a few km away!
Last stop was the University College Cork which is where Ted is attending medical school and is located across the street from my B&B. The university was founded in 1845 as one of three Queen’s Colleges located in Belfast, Cork, and Galway. It became University College, Cork, under the Irish Universities Act of 1908. The Universities Act 1997 renamed the university as National University of Ireland, Cork.