November 26, 2008

County Wicklow: Conyngham Arms

The Celtic tour we took on our last day was indeed a fabulous one. Of course, after the shoddy treatment by that other company, these people could have just done the minimum and we would have been praising them. They didn't at all. Over the Top Tours gave us a good look at a lot of the area north of Dublin and the driver/guide was knowledgeable and personable. In all it made for a great day.

Their tour buses hold a very small number of people, which makes the day much more enjoyable. We could go just about anywhere in the small van and we never felt like we were wasting our time at a stop...this would mostly be due to the fact that we only stopped when at a sight/location or for lunch. No uselessness here, people.

Our morning consisted of a visit to the Fourknocks passage tomb, a tour of Mellifont Abbey and a stop at Monasterboice to see the round tower and high crosses. We were all ready for some lunch at this point, and it was the next stop on our tour.

We stopped in Slane Village for lunch. There is an intersection in Slane Village with four identical three-storey houses on each corner. Our guide informed us that there were four sisters who wanted to keep an eye on each other's comings and goings. I don't have a photo as we were on the bus, but an interesting story nonetheless. I suppose those sisters were a tad competitive...assuming the story is true.

Remember how I told you that when the Queen (of England) passed away, back when England ruled Ireland, people were asked to paint their doors black...but in Ireland they rebelled and painted them every other color? Well, 'tis true away from the city as well:

I thought this house (cottage?) was quaint. Yup. I said quaint. Only because it is in Ireland, I am sure. Either way, you get to see a photo of it:

The name of the restaurant at which we ate is Conyngham Arms. We had a decent meal there, and if I recall correctly, it was a typical Irish meal to boot. Rocket Man and I were a tad worried about the food, since everyone we knew who had been to Ireland went a while ago when the food was still quite boring and bland. These days, however, things have changed. Yes, potatoes are still a major part of each meal, but they were used interestingly and tasted good to us. No boring stuff where we ate, no siree.

Perhaps the best part of our lunchtime stop was that behind the restaurant, there was a small parking area. Within that area was this road sign:

Not just slow, people. Dead slow.

After lunch we headed over to the Hill of Slane where Saint Patrick gained his fame.

Ugh. Sorry about that one, folks.

I guess I'm not completely rid of the elementary school music teacher yet...

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