The Nobel Laureates of Ireland

Ireland is a small island, but it has more Nobel Laureates for literature than any other country— which is remarkable. And even beyond the laureates there are world famous writers like Jonathan Swift and Oscar Wilde and James Joyce. The four laureates of Ireland are W.B. Yeats, Samuel Beckett, George Bernard Shaw, and a modern author Seamus Heaney who won the award in 1995. If you’ve not read any of their works I’d suggest: 1) Beckett’s Waiting for Godot and… Read more

Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin

Christ Church Cathedral (aka The Cathedral of the Holy Trinity) stands in the heart of Dublin. It was founded around 1028 by the Hiberno-Norse King of Dublin Sitric Silkenbeard (970-1042) and the first Bishop of Dublin, Dúnán. Following the Norman Invasion by Strongbow in 1170, Henry II took communion here after murdering Thomas Becket! Shortly after, in 1186, it was rebuilt by the Anglo-Normans. During the Reformation, King Henry VIII made sure the church adhered to his new Church of… Read more

Logan got Lucky

If you need a good laugh at the end of the summer, and you want it in movie form (and a movie you can actually take your kids to, as it involves no violence, sex, or even bad language) then Logan Lucky is for sure, for sure the movie for you. For just under two hours you get to watch a group of southern hicks attempt a heist, right under the noses of the authorities, and right under the racetrack… Read more

St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Jonathan Swift

St. Patrick’s Cathedral Founded in 1191, St. Patrick’s is the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland. With its 141-foot spire, it is the tallest and largest church in Ireland. The Statue of St Patrick in the side door of the cathedral has three parts— the torso is from the 13th century, the head is from the 17th century, and the base is from the 19th century. Poor St. Patrick seems to have been treated like a three leaf clover…. Read more

Bored? A ‘Bad’ Rap for Millennials

‘Boredom Is the state of mind Of those who lack Imagination.’ —— About that boredom In an endlessly interesting world, Stop focusing on self-indulgence And watch how things unfurl. Endless entertainment Does not satisfy Don’t pretend it does, Don’t even try. Easily amused? What’s a matter wit’ you? Easily confused? Well….. me too. This world is hard You look for distraction It thrives on novelty The latest attraction. The problem with ‘the latest’ Is new is soon old, As soon… Read more

The Latin Quarter in Galway

The downtown tourist area in Galway, near the river, is called the Latin Quarter. We are not fans of McDonalds, but we are fans of McDonaghs, the fish and chip place where we ate in the Latin Quarter in Galway. I doubt other than in Dublin or Belfast, there are more sidewalk cafes in all of Ireland….. Lots of musicians on the streets as well… A general carnival atmosphere exists in this part of Galway. Read more

The Viking Boats in Galway

We went on a little walking tour through busy Galway, and one of our first stops along the River Corrib, which flows through the city, was to see the Viking boats, docked in town for a while. Fortunately for us, the annual Claddagh Traditional Boat Festival was taking place from May 24 to 28, and today is the 25th! We got to see the two recreated, sleek Viking longships which were moored in the harbor! The Viking age lasted from… Read more

The Church of ole St. Nick in Galway

Galway is a huge tourist destination, and the day we were there it was packed to the gills with tourists. But one place you could pretty much count on getting away from them was in a major church. We visited the Collegiate Church of St. Nicholas, the religious center of Medieval Galway, founded in 1320 and dedicated to Saint Nicholas of Myra. He is the patron saint of seafarers and basis for the legends of St. Nick (Santa Claus!). We… Read more

The Cliffs of Moher (not less)

We were eager to vist the Cliffs of Moher (pronounced More), in Co. Clare. The cliffs stretch 5 miles from Hag’s Head (390 feet) in the south to Doolin in the north. The highest point is 700 feet. The cliffs get their name from Fort Moher/Mothar once located at Hag’s Head. The cliffs are composed of layered shale, sandstone and flagstone containing marine fossils. In 2007 the Visitors Centre was opened. For ecological reasons, it was built under ground. We… Read more

A Poem for Christy

FIVE YEARS ON— SHE’S STILL GONE When you lose a first born you loved You yourself feel quite lost You speak peace to your sorrowing soul But silently count the cost. You lose your bearings, your compass You ask where was his compassion You rationalize some answers, And quiet yourself…after a fashion. Life, it seems, is what happens While making other plans, Death the rudest of wake-up calls Can shock like nothing else can. There are no pieces to pick… Read more

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