Saturday, April 15th–Killarney, Co Kerry

A bit noisier than before; hen party?; taking the morning off; Muckross House, lunch & farms; by cab over and back to dinner and the Irish night at the Jarvey's rest

Park Place Apartments

Silver VW Jetta



As usual it's 11 PM and I'm just beginning to type up my notes from the day. It won't take me all that long to do so, though.

Probably because it's Saturday, I've been able to hear some of the other guests a lot more today than I have since I've been here and most definitely because many of them have been a lot louder and noisier than I like. I don't like it when kids scream and cry and I don't like it when hen parties get drunk or loud and especially not when they don't bother getting out of the halls or off the central patio and into their own rooms with the windows closed. To compensate somewhat for the increased noise level as much as I can, I've had to leave the fan on in the bathroom as well as turning on both of the portable USB powered fans I travel with for background noise when I go to bed. Rant ended.

I did today pretty much what I thought I'd do last night. Because I only planned on doing two things today and one of them wasn't until around 7 PM I wasn't in a hurry to get started this morning. I decided I'd wait and leave here just early enough to have lunch at Muckross House, probably at the Garden Restaurant there. I left here around noon and had no trouble following Google Maps's directions there although it seemed I drove more out of the way than the way we'd come back in on past the House yesterday.

I have to admit that pulling out of my parking space and exiting the tight, cramped underground lot here made me decide that I'd take a cab over for dinner and music this evening instead of driving although where I was going has a nice parking lot with larger spaces.

I've briefly been to the grounds of Muckross House before, this past July when I took a jaunting car in to see the ruins of Muckross Abbey, the House, and Torc Waterfall on my way out of Killarney on the way to Cork, but I only had about 15 minutes to wander around then. I wanted to go on the tour of the House as well as wander around outside.

The House and the estate were very busy today, as was the restaurant. I had a pre-made sandwich, chips, and a muffin with some kind of berries. I finished in time to take the 1:40 PM tour of the House, which had quite a few people going. It didn't make that much difference because they have a strict no photography of any kind policy. The guide was very friendly and informative and the place and its furnishings are lovely.

I then went to the Traditional Farms, the entrance to which was on the way back to where I had parked my car. I walked up the hill to the first of the farms and then most of the way until I could catch the shuttle back down to the entrance. The Farms were very pleasant and pretty and often had great views of the incredible scenery surrounding them. I didn't go into many of the farm buildings being more interested in the scenery and the way the buildings looked outside.

There was a field with three very pretty donkeys grazing, one of whom wandered over to the rock wall where there was a gap in the hedge to investigate me. Unfortunately there was a wire fence on their side of the wall which kept it from getting close enough to pet. There was another field not far along with two very pretty white horses in a corner.

My favorite part, and I'm pretty sure that it is for most visitors especially kids and families, was the Small Animal Farm with a very pretty, small calf, a couple of smaller donkeys, and napping in a stall in a lot of hay two very young, very small and very adorable puppies.

One of the shuttles came by as I was leaving the Small Animals so I caught a ride back down.

Although I thought I had charged it, for some reason the battery in my iPhone with the Irish SIM card was dying so I couldn't take as many pictures on it for sending to friends and posting to Facebook as I'd like but it did last long enough for me to follow the directions on Google Maps to get back here.

I got back here about 4 PM and just hung out until 6 when I called a cab to take me over to the Jarvey's Rest at the Muckross Park Hotel for dinner there and their Irish Night. I got there about 6:30 and was kind of worried about occupying a table at least until the music started but quite frankly although I could very often see the servers wandering around the place helping other patrons they didn't often come by where I was sitting. It took longer for me to get my main course, and order dessert, and get my check, than it should have. I had a pretty good pasta dish but wasn't able to eat all of it, and a very nice rhubarb crumble which I ate all of, the local (and I mean local–the Killarney Brewing Company is just down the road from the Muckross Park Hotel) lager which was also very good.

One problem with being places popular with tourists is families with small children who get bored and run around and make noise so I was pleased as they started to leave as the evening progressed. The music started not much past 8 PM which was a pleasant early start. There were three guys, one who played accordion and two who played guitar and sang. They were all very good but I didn't enjoy it as much when they did John Denver, Johnny Cash, and Glen Campbell–not what I come to Ireland to hear, as popular as American country music is here.

And that's it for tonight. It's not even 11:45 PM yet. I'm going to watch one of my programs, probably finishing the longer "Time Team" episode I started this afternoon before leaving for dinner, and get to bed assuming my fans will cover the loud women enough for me to sleep.

My plans for tomorrow, Easter Sunday, are to walk on over to Ross Castle, which is a 45 minute walk from here. As I did today, I'll leave early enough to have lunch or brunch somewhere along the way. I want to take the tour of the castle, which I've never done before, and see if any of the boat tours on the lake are running. I'll then either take a cab or jaunting car back and get off down around the corner from St Mary's church which is down the street from here. I'll probably stop in for a pint at the Shire pub before coming back here. I'll also keep an eye out for somewhere to have dinner tomorrow night.

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