On the road again…Dublin, then Amsterdam, here we come!

Goodbye, Ireland.  Thanks for welcoming us and for being so beautiful!

We’d decided to prepare the post after we arrived in Dublin for the night.  This was a good way to keep the morning free to finish last-minute packing, organizing and putting things back in their place in the house.


Most often, when we move into a new property, we move some of the furniture to suit our needs. We make every effort to move everything back to its original location before we leave, which we did this morning.


Eileen, our thoughtful owner, stopped by to say goodbye.  It was a pleasure working with her for the past three months.  Over the years we’ve been fortunate to have been hosted by excellent property owners and managers and, of course, we’ve made every effort to be good guests.

Currently, we’re in Dublin.  On our way, we stopped in Oughterard for Tom’s teeth cleaning appointment.  Previously, we’d made an appointment for me to do the same but decided to wait a little longer prior to having any dental work.


The total 3½ hour drive was seamless using “Maps” using the SIM card on my phone which got us here without a hitch.  Once we arrived in Dublin there were a lot of turns and roundabouts but somehow we never made an error. I often wonder why “she’ll” suddenly say, “Make a U-turn” when we’re on the freeway and there’s no need for a U-turn.  Go figure.


We’d decided to stay overnight in a lower-cost hotel close to the airport, the Holiday Inn Express Dublin.  The rates were reasonable compared to many other nearby options and after seeing our room, we were satisfied with the amenities and cleanliness including free Wi-Fi and breakfast.


This hotel doesn’t serve meals other than the included breakfast.  Next door is a Crown Plaza with a decent restaurant according to reviews online.  The main dining room is being renovated.  We’ll dine in the bar.   Tom walked next door and brought back a menu to ensure there would be suitable options for me. There were a few.  


I’ll have plenty of food options once we board the ship on Sunday.  Their chefs are always accommodating my dietary needs with enthusiast and precise care, often making beautiful meals the other guests at our shared table drool over.  


It will be nice to have someone else doing the cooking for a while.  After 15 months of Tom or I cooking and the three months in Ireland, I’m looking forward to the usual good food and service.


Tomorrow morning, we’ll use the hotel’s shuttle to get to the airport.  At the moment, Tom is dropping off the rental car, hoping to get a ride back to the hotel.  Tonight, we’ll walk to the restaurant next door and although my walking is still sketchy, its a relatively short distance.


How am I feeling?  Tapering off the heart medications is taking its toll on me.  It could be several more weeks until I begin to feel the benefit of being off the dangerous drugs with many side effects, which include being on the drugs and… getting off of them.  


But at least for now, I can keep my head up and eyes open during the day.  I’ve gone several days without a nap and have slept through the past three nights, a major improvement.


Like many of us seniors, a good night’s sleep is an elusive thing.  Six good hours without awakening seems to do wonders. Tom sleeps even less, getting up at the crack of dawn and going to bed late.  I don’t know how he does it.


Well, folks, that’s it for our last post from Ireland.  Tomorrow, late afternoon, we’ll write a short post from Amsterdam.  Our hotel room is situated overlooking the canal.  Photos should be good.


Happy day to all!

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Photo from one year ago today, August 8, 2018:

Dad and his offspring posing for a photo we’d taken on a drive in Marloth Park.  For more photos please click here.


The Wild Atlantic Way…Nearing the end of five year ago Madeira, Portugal photos…

Five years ago on a walk, in Madeira, Portugal, we spotted this waterfall.  For more details on the 2014 post, please click here.

Fascinating Fact of the Day About Ireland 
“Wild Atlantic Way is the longest coastal driving route in the world.

The Wild Atlantic Way, a stunning drive that stretches all the way from the cliffs around County Donegal in the far north of Ireland all the way down to the beaches of County Cork, is the ‘longest defined coastal driving route in the world’. The 2,500 km, 1553 mile, the route passes through nine counties and three provinces, can you name them all? If you’re planning on driving this famous route then make sure you build in some time at Ireland’s best surf spots along the way.”

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In the above “Fascinating Fact of the Day” the Wild Atlantic Way, is a 2500 km coastal drive which passes through nine counties (not countries) which includes the following route:

The Wild Atlantic Way in 14 Steps

Here is the map from this site indicating the counties in which the Wild Atlantic Way passes through:

This could be an exciting way for ambitious tourists to see a huge portion of Ireland in only a few weeks.  As mentioned in the above site there are numerous bed & breakfasts, hotels, restaurants and local points of interest along the route.

The 2500 km, 1553 miles, journey could take weeks, especially when stopping for overnight stays and sightseeing.  However, with fuel costs, hotels, and dining, the cost for such an adventure may well be less than a two or three-week stay in more expensive hotels in the large cities.
We walked through this short tunnel to reach the ocean at the other end as shown in these other photos.
We’ll be spending one night in a hotel in Dublin before we fly to Amsterdam in a mere 10 days.  We used priority points from Hotels.com on our site but without our credits, the cost of the four-star hotel is Euro 121.35, US $135.

We’re anticipating dinner to be approximately Euro 72, US $80, in a nearby restaurant plus we’ll need to add another Euro 37, US $40, to our expenses for taxi fare and tip.  Once we arrive on Thursday (next week) we’ll drop off the rental car and use the hotel’s free shuttle to the airport.
Nothing is as mesmerizing as the sea.
The total cost of the one night stay at the hotel near the airport is expected to be Euro 230.35. US $255.  Sure, we could have chosen to drive to Dublin on the day of our 1320 hrs, 1:20 pm flight.  It’s a 3½ hour drive from here.  
But, in an effort to keep stress to a minimum, we felt this short hotel stay was worth it.  We’ll have an unrushed breakfast (included) at the hotel and then plan for a relaxed pace to arrive at the airport a few hours before the flight.
Two small waterfalls flow from the rocks in a natural rock wall.
If a tourist chose to drive the 2500 km Wild Atlantic Way route as their holiday in Ireland most likely they could do it for the above mentioned Euro 230.35. US $255 plus costs for car rental, extra meals, and tours.  

Multiplied accordingly, the anticipated two-week journey may incur a cost of (excluding rental cars, tours, and entrance fees to various venues, and additional meals and snacks), the total cost could be Euro 3209, US $3570.  
Clouds rolling in.
Add approximately another 30% for car rental, and above mentioned extras, this could prove to be quite a holiday especially for families, if the kids and adults typically enjoy rode trips.

Oddly, for world travelers, one would assume we look forward to long road trips but as we’ve mentioned here in the past, neither of enjoys long periods in the car.  Tom is a relatively aggressive driver, with little patience for traffic.
The preformed cement blocks aren’t attractive but serve a useful purpose.
Riding in the car can be stressful for both of us.  The intent of our lives is to keep stress to a minimum, especially with my recent heart surgery.  We’ve found we’ve been able to thoroughly revel in our travels without embarking on long road trips.

The 3½ hour drive to Dublin on August 8th will be a long enough drive for us.  When we arrive in England after the Baltic cruise ends, we’ll fly to Exeter, England and over two months we’ll be driving to our four chosen holidays rentals every two weeks or so as our address changes.  These shorter trips will be perfect for sightseeing and enjoying the English countryside.

Have a great Monday!
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Photo from one year ago today, July 29, 2018:

Male kudus have horns, females do not.  At about 15 months the horns begin to take on the shape of the first spiral. For more photos, please click here.