We left this B&B with a new plan. When Tarzan got ready for bed the night before, he was wearing a nitro patch. It turns out that the driving has been a great strain on him. He has been worried about his blood pressure and heart the whole week. So, the new plan is this—we will drive straight to Dublin, park the car, pay for an extra day at the hotel and hire a taxi for every trip we want to take.

We had a beautiful drive on major highways and stopped in Naas for lunch in a pub. The pub was full of people taking their lunch break from work. That tells you how good it is, the locals go there. I had a yummy tuna melt, Rachel had a wonderful curry chicken pita and Tarzan had a lousy beef stroganoff.

In Dublin, we were able to get a room for an extra night in the hotel even nicer than the first one. After getting all of our stuff into the hotel, we had the taxi pick us up and take us to the Guiness factory. That was the one thing Rachel really wanted to do. When we got there she realized she forgot her camera so I tried to get what she wanted with mine. The best picture of the whole trip is Tarzan in front of a sign in the Guiness Factory that says “Black is Beautiful.”

When you get to the top floor of the factory, you get a free pint of Guiness (or a soda). It takes a full two minutes to pour it because it is so thick and rich. There’s a whole story about that but I didn’t care enough about it to remember why. But, I do remember that the foam was supposed to be very creamy so when Tarzan got his pint, Rachel and I each put our finger in the foam it was creamy alright. I put my finger on my tongue and it was bitter I do not know how people find joy in that taste. Yuck! Rachel liked it, Tarzan says it is an acquired taste, he was not real thrilled with it.

We bought a bunch of souvenirs there and then went out on the street. No Taxis. We walked down an alley past an old broken down building and on to the main street, Thomas Street, which the taxi driver had told us was the part of Dublin that got left behind—in other words, a rough neighborhood. Before we had a chance to be afraid, a taxi came right along and took us to the Brazen Head, the oldest pub in Ireland. Another good meal and good company. Tarzan had Irish stew, Rachel fish and chips and I had wonderful boiled cabbage and ham.

Everyone in Ireland was so friendly (well except for Pee Wee Herman at the Waterford Factory).

May 30, 2008

Our last day in Ireland was spent strolling around Dublin, shopping and sightseeing. We walked through a park, saw Celine Dion’s husband, whoopdeedo. It was a relaxing and lovely day. We ended the day with something really different. While Rachel took a nap, Tarzan and I went grocery shopping and then Tarzan cooked a wonderful dinner for us, lamb chops, marinated salad, crusty bread with several different spreads, anchovy paste, lobster spread and oysters. He also served garlic noodles. Wow! What a way to end a lovely vacation.

May 31, 2008
New York and Phoenix

The airport in Dublin is awful. After standing in line for an hour to check in we were told we were in the wrong line. We went to the place where we were to check in and they were not open. We sat on the floor and waiting for 40 minutes. When they arrived we got right in and through security okay. No one questioned our names on our tickets not matching our passports.

The airplane we took to New York was not as nice as the one from Chicago to Dublin. They never showed a movie, just TV and we didn’t have individual movie screens so we could pick what we wanted to see. I just read the whole 7 hours. The worst part of the trip was the flight from New York to Phoenix. I thought it was going to be about 3 hours, it was another 6 or 7 hours. We were totally beat when we got home at 10:00 p.m. We all just showered and went to bed. Rachel had to be at the airport at 6:30 a.m. the next morning to go home. It took me two days to recover from the trip. I always plan two days after vacation before going back to work. It was a good thing I did it this time.

What a joyeous trip. We saw the real Ireland, we tried real food, we visited just enough tourist places to do the tourist thing and met and visited with the most wonderful people. This was a trip worth taking.