FUN-travel Ireland: Galway Day 3 & 4

October 3, 2011 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel Ireland: Galway Day 3 & 4 

Day 12 – Saturday, September 24 – Galway – Oyster Festival – windy, cloudy, cool, turning warm & sunny

Oyster Queen & her Court

  • 1st stop – 10:45 Meyrick hotel – (told by Michael to be there by 11:00 as there will be a surprise)
  • 11:30 Festivities start & surprise is Michael is Emcee of the event – WRTC2BSL!
  • Oyster Queen & her court of 2 young girls open the event w/mayor of Galway
  • 11:45 – parade start & consists of  – N. Ireland Friendship band – local school band of children playing flutes & drums and shaking pom poms – too cute! – oyster shucking contenders carrying their country flags, stilt walkers in colorful dragon like costumes & 2 very old cars
  • Delightful walk thru town with parade to Oyster Festival (feels like the good old days, no barricades, no police)
  • Arrive Oyster Festival Tent – Included in 80 Euro pp – a Guinness, half dozen oysters, cold seafood platter

Who Will Win?

  • Festivities include an Irish band on stage – then Irish dancers perform – then the 16 countries vying for Oyster Shucker Champion tape up their hands

    Xavier Celebrates

  • After 3 qualifying rounds winners are announced & Xavier from Belgium wins the triple crown! Best in time, best in plated presentation, & overall winner (shucks 30 oysters in 3:45 minutes)
  • Best weather we’ve had so far (or I’m just getting used to it) so go outside – at picnic table meet woman from Scotland, woman from Belfast & man from UK – have lovely chat – approached by German TV newswoman who wants to film us – asks why we are here & if we like oysters – #1 answer is “we’re here for the craic” & don’t really like oysters
  • Take break at 5 pm – walk in town & have Pub stop for Guinness & Bailey’s/coffee
  • FUN-food – Martine’s – Thai style mussels w/lemongrass, rack of lamb w/au gratin potatoes, more Bailey’s & Coffee & Irish Coffee

FF (FUN-fact) – The Irish are addicted to their Craic – pronounced “crack” a term meaning fun, entertainment, and enjoyable conversation

Day 13 – Sunday, September 25 – Galway to Connemara – windy, breezy, partly sunny (feels warmer)

  • After breakfast take short drive up to Connemara
  • 1st stop – Quiet Man Bridge (1951 John Wayne & Maureen O’hara filmed here)
  • 2nd stop – Oughterard for cappuccino @ The Bistro

  • Back to room for nice nap
  • Walk to dinner at Galway Country Club (fish & chips, stuffed mushrooms, baked brie – mediocre) because it’s on the way to see Trad on the Prom – 2 hour Riverdance show – VG!

    Quiet Man Bridge

  • Shortly before leaving feeling  very hot & sick
  • Walk home in cool breeze & still feel ill

Not so FF – have never been so sick in my entire adult life! Best guess is tartar sauce! We ate the exact same thing (since we always share) and Chris didn’t eat that

FUN-travel Ireland: Galway Day 1 & 2

September 30, 2011 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel Ireland: Galway Day 1 & 2 

Day 10 – Thursday, September 22 – Arrive Galway 3:00 – windy, cloudy, cool, sprinkles

Spanish Arch

FF (FUN-fact) – Today is Arthur Guinness Day and you get a free pint if you are in the pub by 17:59 (the year it was founded) Great gimmick, huh?

  • Arrive Lonergon’s Pub 17:50 – no free Guinness as promised by ads – but they did last year!
  • Chris asks the bartender about the Oyster Festival & which day is the best – she points to a man and says, “He’s the one to ask.” – we meet Michael, Ann & Michelle who tell us Saturday & phone for tickets & they buy us a pint! Turns out we get 10% discount because of him & we do get a free Guinness!

WRTC2BSL – What are the chances to be so lucky!

  • FUN-food – De Roberta’s Italian – caprese salad, pasta w/eggplant, porcinis & cream sauce, the works pizza – YUMMY!

Day 11 – Friday, September 23 – Galway – windy, cloudy, sprinkles (feels warmer or just getting used to it)

N. Ireland Friendship Band

  • 1st stop – go to body shop to drop car – realize side mirror casing got broken yesterday when got to close to left side of road (imagine that!)
  • 2nd stop – after short walk arrive city center
  • 3rd stop – shoe shopping (my 12 yr old Ecco’s have died) find a FUN pair to replace them
  • 4th stop – car looks great – only 20 euro! side mirror part not fixed as it takes 3 days to order
  • 5th stop – find free parking (requires 5 minute walk back to city center)
  • 6th stop – pub – after more walking around town
  • FUN-food – Nimmo’s at Spanish Arch (suggested by Dan @ Hugo’s in Dublin) – mussels w/ cilantro & chorizo – salad of soft red wine pears, toasty walnuts, crispy smoked lardon (bacon fat chunks) & Crozier Blue Cheese – hake on roasted Irish beets, wilted greens & herby creme fraiche – “Sticks” a shiraz/viognier blend VG! – even have fruit tart dessert in honor of my dad’s 93rd birthday today