Sunday was our final full day in Ireland and turned out to be the dreariest day there so we finally had to break out our rain gear. We attended what is most likely the fastest Sunday mass ever. You had to pay attention to hear what the priest was saying through his thick brogue, on top of him speaking very fast. One thing that was different was that after the opening blessing everyone knelt down until we got to the gospel, which is what happens in a Latin/Tridentine mass. Besides being in English, the whole mass reminded me of the Tridentine Rite. St Finbarr’s was a beautiful church. There were lovely stained-glass windows of the Irish saints, lots of beautiful statues, and a quaint grotto to Mary just outside the church.
After church we headed straight to Blarney Castle. Even with the rain, albeit a light rain, there were a lot of people visiting that day. We headed to get in a pretty long line, and while the dad’s held our place Kelle and I took the kids to look quickly at some of the nearby gardens. There are a ton of gardens and you could spend most of the day there walking through them all. After an hour plus wait that took us through the castle and up very, very, very narrow and windy steps we arrived on top of the castle where everyone age 8 and up kissed Blarney Stone. The man had Drew lie back and at the last minute told him to “blow it a kiss” because his arms weren't long enough to hold the bars and lower himself down to actually kiss it. We enjoyed lunch in the café where we had the most delicious Irish stew and ice cream. The café was much larger than we realized as the back half of it had tables that were set in old horse stalls. After lunch we followed a path down one of the gardens that took us past a waterfall. Then Brian had us double time it back to the car as we had 4 pm reservations for a tour at Jameson distillery.
|The Steep and Narrow Way up to the Blarney Stone|
|The Entomologist Found Another Bug|
|The Whole Group|
|Hannah Loved this Red Bench|
|View from Top of Blarney Castle|
|View from the Top of Blarney Castle|
|Genevieve Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Ann's Son Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Isaac Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Kelle Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Drew Blowing a Kiss to the Stone|
|Brian Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Hannah Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Ann's Oldest Daughter Kissing the Blarney Stone|
|Ann's Youngest Daughter Kissing the Blarney Stone|
The Jameson tour in Cork was well worth the time and money. The tour lasted about 45 minutes and was engaging for most of the kids and included some history about Cork and not just how the whisky was made. The tour ended with the kids enjoying a refreshing ginger ale while the adults enjoyed ginger and Jameson or some straight up whiskey, included in the entrance fee. We did pick up some souvenirs here, but not much whiskey. The limits on the amount of liquid we could carry home on Ryan Air restricted us to a just few samples, which we enjoyed back in Germany and in the US. This seem the right time to mention that after our trip my son told me that my husband doesn’t really need a Father’s Day gift as he drank his gift all over Germany and Ireland, which is the truth!
|Ringing the Bell|
We ended the day driving into Cork to find a place for dinner. We did not eat in a pub! We ate at a restaurant called Amicus. It took us a while to find a place to eat and this was the least Irish place we’d eaten at yet. The food ended up being quite good, although it did take a while to get to us.