Katie in Kilkenny!

Recently, I got to explore the southeastern part of Ireland!  Aside from the evil-advice-giving bus driver (more about that later), we had a great weekend!!  Amanda’s Dad’s friend Tom (you still with me?) and his wife Lisa (and their baby) own and run a pub in Piltown.  We arrived mid-Friday, and got to know Lisa as she took us on a peaceful afternoon walk since we were blessed with three full days of gorgeous weather.  Let me repeat this: in Ireland this past weekend, I soaked up three consecutive days, in their entirety, of glorious sunshine!!!  I didn’t realize how much I’d missed seeing the sun, but it made me so happy simply to be outside in it!  Lisa was super friendly, and we had a lot in common, especially because she lived in the Boston area until she met her Irish husband about 15 years ago.  We had some really nice food from the pub for lunch, she cooked us a yummy dinner and dessert, and we had a quiet movie night which was great!  Lisa was dog-sitting for the weekend, and I couldn’t resist throwing up a few pics…

pupppyyyy

Lovely weather on our walk!

Saturday afternoon, Lisa drove us north from Piltown into Kilkenny where I enjoyed a spicy chicken Panini and a warm fruit crumble (see below).  After lunch, Amanda and I were on our own and checked out the hostel we were staying at.  We did some shopping, got dinner, and had a good time exploring the nightlife in Kilkenny.

SO GOOD!

Sunday morning, the hostel kicked us out bright and early without breakfast, so we wandered and found the breakfast café I had spotted the day before.  I enjoyed some delicious crepes with maple syrup!  I’d completely forgotten I used to make those all the time in high school after Ms. Briggs taught us, so I definitely need to start those again.  We walked around Kilkenny in the morning sunshine and took a tour of the famous Kilkenny Castle from so long ago!  It was neat to see the restored Victorian decorations inside, and they had an informative video telling of its history.

Kilkenny Castle (unfortunately, couldn't take pictures inside)

Though I’ve subtly praised the convenience and reasonable cheapness of Irish public transportation since I’ve been here, namely the bus systems, the bus companies turned from friend to foe on Sunday!  Dun dun dun dunnnnn!  Being the prepared travelers that we are since finding enjoyment in planning all of our own trips, Amanda and I had double checked and written down the best bus routes we needed to get back to Limerick.  However, after taking a seemingly knowledgeable bus driver’s advice, we soon realized that he had dropped us off in a little town with a ton of time to kill after telling us this route would be “much faster”.  While our perfectly planned bus routes ran back to Limerick, we ended up stranded in Clonmel with nearly two hours to wait until the next bus.  I was furious!  I soon calmed down when I realized our serendipitous luck with the sunny, warm weather (there was no inside part of the bus station).  The fact that there was a Chinese food restaurant across the street may have also helped my growling stomach as we waited…  In spite of the fact that we shouldn’t have taken the bus authority figure’s route advice, we ended up getting back at a reasonable hour Sunday evening and maybe even got a little tan from hanging outside!

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