Some really old books and a few foamy pints

In Dublin’s fair city – Days 7 & 8 – Dublin Castle, Chester Beatty Library & Guinness Storehouse Visits to Dublin Castle and the Chester A. Beatty Library were also in order – like I said in a previous post, there is no rest for the weary when I’m in charge of a trip. We will…

Foxy friars, dented knights, and a sermon about sleeping in church

In Dublin’s fair city – Days 5 & 7 – Christ Church Cathedral and St. Patricks Cathedral Christ Church Cathedral was difficult to miss. Halfway between the west part of Dublin at the Liberties and the city centre of Temple Bar, it dominated the skyline from the main road and key city bus lines. Upon booking…

Ah, put a Cork in it.

In Dublin’s Fair City – Day 6 – Blarney Castle, Rock of Cashel, and Cork An now for something completely different from my last post – something a lot lighter in tone. It was another day and another early morning start to catch a tour bus out of the city. We had to meet at 6:30…

A terrible beauty is born

In Dublin’s fair city – Days 3 and 4 – Kilmainham Gaol and going in search of history “If you strike us down now we shall rise again and renew the fight. You cannot conquer Ireland; you cannot extinguish the Irish passion for freedom. If our deed has not been sufficient to win freedom then…

The jewels of the Emerald Isle

In Dublin’s fair city – Day 2 – a trip to Kilkenny, Wicklow Mountains, and Glendalough  We were in Dublin for a day when we had a side-trip planned – this time out to Kilkenny, Wicklow, and the ancient monastery at Glendalough. At Kilkenny, we piled out of the bus at the castle – where…

No rest for the weary. Not on my watch.

London Redux – 1 week in the capital – An assortment of things, part 2 One afternoon, I dragged Mum and my sister from Westminster Station to the Southbank to walk along the Thames and take pictures of iconic sites. We got to the Waterloo Bridge, not quite getting to St. Paul’s as I had planned,…

What to do if you think you’ve seen it all (in London)

London Redux – 1 week in the capital – Things to do that are not the Tower, Big Ben, or a museum With my family off to see the Tower of London, I embarked on a mystery photography tour of London’s old city conducted by Hairy Goat Photography Tours and Adventure. As a buddy digital…

Imparting a love of the dreaming spires

London Redux – 1 week in the capital – A train trip to Oxford If anything, I had to help my family understand why I loved Oxford. We took a train from Paddington Station out to the City of Dreaming Spires, and I started our tour with a walk through Cornmarket Street to St. Aldate’s and…

How to approach the electric kettle: A guide for Americans

London Redux – 1 week in the capital – An assortment of things, part 1 My sister and I have been convinced for awhile that we must be part British. I’ve known for awhile that I must be – or, at the very least, I should be. I’ve had this feeling since I was about thirteen….

The heights of Montjuïc and an aborted landing at Heathrow

Un viaje en España – Day 11 – Adios, Barcelona A final day in Spain brought us to the gorgeous heights of Montjuïc, the tallest peak around Barcelona. It was an easy trek there – taking the Metro to the funicular rail up to the Montjuïc station. From there, it’s an extra charge to take the…

Gaudí and the Gothic

Un viaje en España – Day 10 – Barcelona After a visit again to Parc Güell, this time to actually enter into the park and the monument, we spied the famous Gaudí salamander sculpture and the undulating, not god-less lines of the monument’s seating arrangement overlooking Parc Güell’s architecture. The rainbow-coloured broken ceramic tiles shunted sunlight around…

So Gaudí

Un viaje en España – Day 9 – Barcelona The first morning in Barcelona brought us to Parc Güell, further north of where we were staying near the Gran Via in the L’Eixample neighborhood. It was cool (relatively cool in the mid-80s F, which was a far cry from 115’F in Seville), overcast, and spitting…