Posts Tagged ‘Ireland’

Hello dear Blogosphere,

I am currently contemplating if I will have yet another latte on this lovely Sunday. Then I am pretty comfortable sitting here on the couch and getting aforementioned latte would mean I would have to rise from the couch. That does require some consideration.

Now don’t think that I have been a couch potato all day here. Waking up this morning I had no plans at all really, well apart from what I would have to eat. That was fully planned… I was going to attempt to make home-made Eggs Benedict and then I have this soup that needs to be eaten and finally I made this lovely Texan Chilli yesterday which will be my supper tonight. Don’t you just love it when you have friends from all over the world that can give you fab recipes, like Real Texan Chilli (not for the faint hearted!).

The Eggs Benedict… I cannot poach an egg for my life (need to work on that) so in the end I fried the little feckers the eggs. Then the Hollandaise sauce… I had found some ready-made one that I thought I’d give a try. Well now… the sauce was vile! I ended up scraping if off my (fried) eggs and ham and most ended up in the bin. Major fail! (At least the latte was great, cos that I can do). So lesson learned here; next time I want Eggs Benedicts – eat out!

I was eying the sky all morning to see if it would clear. In the end I decided to brave the heavy clouds where the sun peeked out every so often. Ended up going for a long walk and found a way down to the Grand Canal not too far away from me, a walkway that I did not know existed. It was sooo nice! Many others were out for a walk, the canal was surrounded by greenery and flowers and birds were chirping everywhere. I even saw a bird of prey. Now don’t ask me what type as I was a bit too far away and also I never got into bird watching so all I can tell you is that it was a bird of prey of some kind (the other bird he was chasing would probably confirm that).  It could have been a falcon as they are known in the area.

I also discovered that you can walk all the way into town via the canal. Will definitely try that at some stage. It is about 14km which is doable. Not today though as it looks like it will start to rain any moment now. I am glad I found that walkway. Definitely beats just sitting inside on the couch all day.

Well I believe that coffee is calling me after all. I will leave you with a few pictures of the Grand Canal and hope you all have a lovely Sunday.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Yes – I know, I know (hanging head low) I have been a very bad blogger lately. Not a single line has been written. I even neglected to check my stats (in fear that they have turned abysmal which would not have been surprising at all). In fact I have hardly turned on switched on my laptop for days (not turned on… it is good but not THAT good). My only online world (apart from work which is a whole other playing field) has consisted of FB on my phone.

Yes I know it is possible to blog with a smartphone… I even have the app! BUT… no, it is just a bit too much hassle. So what’s up with this absence you may ask; have I met someone, have I been on some exotic holiday, have I forgotten to leave work and slept under my desk? Hmm not quite. I’ve been busy in work yes. Apart from meeting up with my friends… I have a zero romantic social life. Unless I win the lotto the most exotic holiday is my balcony at the moment, which leads me to something that most definitely has kept me away from the laptop… the sun shone down on Ireland!! We went from 11 degrees and rain to 22 degrees and UNBROKEN sunshine (it actually said that in the weather report!) in two days!! I have never (read:NEVER) read that in an Irish weather report in the 12 years I have lived here. Just so that you understand the phenomenal event that it has been. I have not lost the plot quite yet. However, yes I have been that excited about this.

Another reason you see to why I have not been blogging is that I was feeling extremely down. I got sick of only writing about feeling crap and in the end I just did not have anything to say anymore. I mean, how many times can you say that you feel down. Yes there are/were things that are not great and that contributed to me feeling the way I felt but normally I can get myself out of the funk after a while. This time I didn’t and then… the sun came out. All the sudden life felt easier and I was relaxing in my sunchair on my balcony (after a major scrub the decking looked nice again). I was walking down the beach in the sun with friends soaking up the happy atmosphere and equal parts sunshine. I realized I (amongst other things) was in severe need of vitamin D. So I made sure to spend as much time outside as possible. Didn’t burn myself either apart from a spot om my back where I could not reach when applying sun lotion (wonder if cats can be taught to apply sun lotion…). What a difference a bit of sun makes.

Today it is actually a bit cloudy but still 20 degrees and they say the weekend is supposed to be nice. Think a hike is on the cards at the weekend. In either case, I feel much happier. There are still things I need to look into and things are not all rosy and great but that subject is for another time.

So all I wanted to say really is that I am still here. I have not given up on blogging. It may have become somewhat sporadic but bear with me.

Hope the sun is shining on you wherever you may be!

Summer in Dublin. Dollymount Beach.

Went for a longer walk today with some friends. In gale storm winds with the sand clinging to everything. Yeah, walking along the beach in strong wind might not be the best idea unless you want to chew sand for a good few hours but it was worth it. Lots of kite surfers and wind surfers out at the beach taking advantage of a windy day with no freezing rain.

I needed to get out a bit. There was no training at the club yesterday so instead I cleaned the entire apartment, for hours. Even cleaning the windows!! Which, if you know me, is a very rare occurrence. My cats have a clear view out again and the neighbors in, I guess… whatever perspective you prefer. So getting out and stretching my legs was sorely needed. As tired as I have been lately I did seem to have a weird surge of energy, I could have kept walking for many more hours. It was just so nice.

When I was younger I actually loathed “going for a walk”… I always thought it was boring and not fast enough and what was the point… yeah, funny how things change. Now I actually cherish to go for a long walk. It clears my head (and works my legs and bum – always a bonus). Walking with friends is great. You get to share some beautiful scenery, get out and about and can have a chat or just companionable silence and then finish of with a cold beer, glass of wine or good aul latte. There is no better therapy for a tired and fed-up mind.

That is really how things have been a bit… tired and fed-up, hence the non-existent blogging. So it seems the walking did the trick. Now I just have to pray, dance, sing to the weather gods that they send some decent weather to Ireland for a while (though my singing might have the opposite effect so might leave that out) so that we can have plenty more days walking. Preferably without walking into a sandstorm.

Monday is nipping at the heels once again. So I will enjoy the last Sunday hours, hope you all have a good one.

Walking for hours (not quite knowing where the path would lead) in fabulous surroundings, taking a few pictures, soaking up the fresh air and the sun… it does not get much better for the soul than that. This weekend gone by was like balm for my soul.

Last week a very good friend and I decided to go away for the weekend. We decided to go to the northwest of Ireland, to an area called County Donegal – specifically to a lovely place called Killybegs.

It was a fantastic weekend. I could most likely write for hours but instead I will share with you some highlights and most importantly some pictures of this beautiful place.

  • The best little hotel in town Tara Hotel, highly recommended! Try to get a room with the view of the harbor – so you can see the fishing boats go out at night and come back early morning.
  • The seafood chowder… ohh soo good!
  • Sheep… lots of sheep…
  • Stillness – only disturbed by those cheeky seagulls.
  • A perfectly calm sea (just a few ripples caused by a few hungry seals).
  • Sea mist that slowly lifted, sunshine and hardly a breeze.
  • Absolutely beautiful views.

 

The harbor in Killybegs:

The beauty about being here off-season is that we hardly saw any other walkers/hikers around. Just a few locals and plenty of sheep (one was even leading us for quite some time)

The nearby Slieve League Cliffs are a must visit and absolutely stunning. The sea mist came and went but never fully lifted in the sunshine.

So 407.3 miles by car, several hours by foot and two fantastic days – makes one great weekend. The only bad thing was that it ended too quick. So for the next trip away it will have to be a two nights stay. Can’t wait!

 

 

 

 

Rum hazed days

Posted: September 10, 2011 in Miscellaneous
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I’m sitting here feeling a little bit guilty that I have not posted anything for a whole week. My excuse is hazed in rum fumes. I had a few really busy days in the beginning of the week in work as all had to be done in time for our team’s kick-off event on Thursday.

Oh boy did we kick-off. After the obligatory meeting the activities started…. sailing, archery, climbing, canoeing and all was done in teams so the competition was fierce. After getting soaked, arms aching from paddling in a not very synchronized manner and with the mother of all bruises on my arm from archery (that string hits hard people) the BBQ and the drinking began. This is Ireland after all and the party was on.

Oh lord I had way, way too much cider, beer, rum&coke lemonade and even cigarettes… Jeez, no idea where I got that bright idea from, I have not smoked in years. A free bar is truly an evil thing. There was dancing, there was drunken ramblings deep discussions about extremely important topics (I’m sure they were), there was good-humored slagging between different nationalities, there was laughter and when the bar closed the party continued in one of the cottages we stayed in. It was a fabulous party day with great people.

At 3am I stumbled to bed, still fully intending to drive home later on that day. Yeah right.

Breakfast at 9 was… OK. At 10 I was supposed to drive myself and two friends back home. At this stage everyone was laughing at the state I was in. It was not happening. One of the girls ended up driving with me doing my best not to get sick in the car. There was no way in hell that I could drive anywhere, so I ended up sitting on her sofa for hours trying to recover. I had to sit very, very, very still for a long time. Oh my… it was one of the worst hangovers I have had in many years. Put it this way, I was ridiculously happy when I managed to drink a glass of water at about 5pm.

So the lesson is… avoid rum, cider and cigarettes too much lemonade. Or just don’t do it often… I still feel in a haze today which is insane. Still though… it was brilliant. I work with some awesome people!

This seems strangely apt:

Glas of german "Würzburger Hofbräu" ...

Image via Wikipedia

In this particular moment I am sitting on my balcony in my sun-chair with my laptop in my lap (obviously –  as I have yet to invent telepathic blogging…working on it though). I have a cold beer (German pilsner) next to me and let me tell you… it is oh so good! The sun is shining, there is not a cloud in the sky and the temperature is hovering around 25 c in the shade. Can it get any better than this??

It is a bank holiday weekend, meaning that all are off on Monday as well. As we do not get this sort of weather often in Ireland our managers in work decided that we could all leave at 3pm to enjoy the sun and to have a great long weekend. This month will be mad busy in work so they basically told everyone to go home and chill while we can. Yep… it is a pretty decent job that I have, even though it can drive me mad at times.

Tomorrow I will head into the Wicklow Mountains with a friend and go for day of hiking. Ending it with a night in a B&B before heading back to Dublin. The weather forecast looks promising and I am really looking forward to it. Will hopefully remember to take some pictures and maybe put together a post later on – provided I have not gotten lost and am halfway to Galway or something… with my sense of direction anything can happen.

It has been a pretty good week altogether. Busy in work but not mentally… yet. Attended a course yesterday called “Emergenetics”. Not sure if anyone of you ever have heard of it or done it but it was great fun. Basically it is about finding out your preferences and certain behaviours etc. It was pretty awesome. It helps in seeing why some people react the way they do and makes you understand others that you work with easier. I am not going to go through my results here. All I will say is that according to my profile my emergenetics motto is: “Efficiency with feeling”… LOL!!

I will continue to catch some rays now and try to get a somewhat resemblance off a tan. Living in Ireland means that you must take every available opportunity there is to get some sun. I was supposed to clean my apartment but there is no way I am doing that right now. Hope you all have a great weekend wherever you are!

This image is a full-disk view of the X-ray Su...

Image via Wikipedia

Half an hour ago the sun was shining… I promise! I did see it! It has now retreated behind the ever increasingly clouds again. Hmmm… this could be used as a really deep, profound metaphor but I am actually talking about the real, actual red-hot ball of fire that hovers above our heads in outer space. You know, the one that has been extremely shy to show its face the last month. Why didn’t I move to Australia or something when I decided to move from the land of the Vikings? Instead I ended up just a short up away in Dublinia…just as some of the aforementioned Vikings.

As much in my life, it just kind of happened. It was never planned that I was going to move to Ireland at all. It seems most of my life develops without me having much of a say in it. This is a bit odd considering that I am known to be a bit of a planner. I like to know what I am doing on a day-to-day basis and am pretty organized. I normally dislike interruption to my made-up daily schedule…sad but true. I have come to terms with that this is how I am, as boring as it may sound. The strange thing though is that all major events in my life have been spur of the moment things. No planning and quite life changing in many respects.

Even the subject I was studying in university (Sociology) was a flip the coin decision. I did love it though. Moving country was another quick decision. Within a very short period of time I decided to get rid of my (very nice) apartment and moved to Cardiff, Wales to study another year… and what a mad year that was! I then after a year and a half decided to accept a job in Dublin, Ireland from one day to the next. And here I still am now, part from a year back to the UK when I thought the grass would be greener on the other side..it wasn’t.

I do like it here still. People are nice and you are free to be whomever you want to be. I have met some amazing friends and a partner to share my life with. Can you imagine that is has been over 10 years already? So yes, I am happy here. I just wish the sun would take up a more permanent residence here as well.

Maybe I should convince all to Australia…come on people, are you up for it?!