Day 7: Blarney

Sunday, October 14th

We began today with some shopping at Blarney Wollen Mills, known as the “largest Irish shop in the world”.

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Then it was off to Church of the Immaculate Conception, just a few steps away, for Mass. The choir loft was very tight, even for our small group, but it featured a beautiful rose window of St. Cecilia and an interesting little organ. Mass was well attended and everyone was very welcoming. One lady did complain that I” played the organ too loud” at the end of Mass. I guess they aren’t used to bombastic postludes!

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After Mass we headed to Blarney Castle, home of the famous Blarney Stone. It is said that those who kiss the stone will have 7 years of the gift of gab, that is, being able to speak well and convincingly. We’re not sure that the choir needs much help in this department, but we kissed the stone nonetheless.

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 The view from atop blarney castle

The view from atop blarney castle

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 castle interior

castle interior

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 In order to kiss the stone, pilgrims must lay on their back and lean off the edge of a 130 foot wall. Not for the faint of heart!

In order to kiss the stone, pilgrims must lay on their back and lean off the edge of a 130 foot wall. Not for the faint of heart!

 APPARENTLY a necessary room in a castle.

APPARENTLY a necessary room in a castle.

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 The grounds of blarney castle were simply gorgeous.

The grounds of blarney castle were simply gorgeous.

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After we explored Blarney, we headed to Dublin, where we checked into our hotel and had dinner. After dinner, we decided to get a taste of Dublin nightlife.

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 APPARENTLY it is tradition at this bar to write your name on a dollar bill and then tape it to th wall?

APPARENTLY it is tradition at this bar to write your name on a dollar bill and then tape it to th wall?

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After a fun evening, we retired to our hotel to recharge for the day ahead. Good night, Dublin!