• BOOKS

    DRIVING OVER LEMONS

    Given the ban on travel because of the current pandemic, and a series of unfortunate events that have prevented us from even wandering around Ireland, I've taken lately to travelling vicariously through other people's accounts of their journeys and life experiences in various parts of the world. In this adventure we're off to Andalucia in the 1980s with the first…

  • PLACES

    IRELAND: THE STAR WARS CONNECTION

    The Ban Cheile* and I were fully charged and ready for our three-day adventure to South West Kerry to see if the Star Wars™ influence had changed the area in any way and also to enjoy a seriously chilled extended weekend break. If you’re a Star Wars fan you’ll know the cast and crew spent some time in and around…

  • PLACES

    IRELAND: VALENTIA – ISLAND AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD

    While the Ban Cheile* and I were on our Ring Of Kerry trip last month we based ourselves in the Valentia Royal Hotel on the small island off the Kerry coast. The island is just 11km long and 3km wide with a population of only 665 permanent residents – about the same as a very small neighbourhood in Dublin. Having said that…

  • PLACES

    VALENTIA ROYAL HOTEL

    The Ban Cheile* and I were really looking forward to our three-day stay on  Valentia Island (Kerry, Ireland). We jokingly decided we’d go to South West Cork to see if we can follow the Force as it were.  All true Star Wars fans know by now that the amazing scene at the end of The Force Awakens, where Luke Skywalker…

  • PLACES

    GALWAY: A WEEKEND TRIP (Part 2)

    In Galway: A Weekend Trip (Part 1) I took you through the food and accommodation highlights of our recent weekend trip to Galway. In this instalment, I want to share some photographs of the first leg of our tour of the Wild Atlantic Way.  The Lonely Planet™ describes the route as “The ‘Wild Atlantic Way’ driving route neatly packages the abundant attractions…

  • PLACES

    CHARLES FORT

    How often do you get the chance to have a day out with your Grown Up Children – especially when there are no grandchildren involved? Not too often in our case and so we were delighted when last month, The Ban Chéile* and I teamed up with GUC No. 4 and No. 6 for a trip to Charles Fort near…

  • PLACES

    NEW YORK, NEW YORK! (Challenge #6)

    New York City, USA is the place I would like to see most of all for a number of good reasons and here they are (in no particular order). I’m a shopaholic and would love to roam through the department stores and shopping thoroughfares of the Big Apple (preferably with someone else’s credit card!). I was raised on TV cop…

  • PLACES,  SERIES

    FRANCE 2013: BEDENAC

    At the end of news broadcasts there’s usually a lighter item preceded with the words “and finally..” and I suppose this is it for our holiday in France 2013 (although we still have the 8 hour drive to Roscoff tomorrow and the sailing). We rented a gite in Bedénac in Charente owned by Sue and Paul Wright in 2011 and…

  • PLACES

    FRANCE 2013: ARCACHON

    In my mind there are Beach People and for the record I’m not one of them. Beach People thrive on finding a spot amongst hordes of other sun, sea and sand worshippers and laying out between swims like seals basking in the sunshine. They have mastered the knack of dressing and undressing under a multicoloured towel slightly larger than a…

  • PLACES

    FRANCE 2013: LA ROCHELLE

    I have to admit I have a soft spot for La Rochelle despite its typical touristy feel and constant throng of people. We have stopped off in La Rochelle on almost everyone of our 5 trips to France, sometimes just for a few hours and on one occasion staying for a few days. The winding streets and always upbeat atmosphere…

  • PLACES

    FRANCE 2013: ROCHEFORT

    I have to admit Rochefort on the west coast of France had little to show for the two hour drive from our rented gite in Bedenac just north of Bordeaux. The main attraction is an exhibition based around what appears to be a very slow restoration of an old fashioned sailing vessel and the old rope making factory. Neither of…

  • PLACES

    FRANCE 2013: BLAYE MARKET DAY

      Wednesday and Saturday are the big market days in France – although there are various types of market held on other days during the summer months but they’re specific to certain towns and villages. We decided it was time to have that market experience once again and so The Ban Chéile (henceforth TBC) and I set out on a 30…

  • PLACES

    FRANCE 2013 – COGNAC BLUES

    My Ban-Cheile* and I took a trip into Cognac to catch some of the ambiance of the Blues Festival. The festival runs from July 2nd -July 7th and attracts people from all over the world and not just France. The one hour drive north from Bédenac took us through undulating vineyards as far as the eye could see, interspersed with…