The days update will be delayed a little bit as we are a little too drunk tonight to recount the day effectively.

I will say that today has been one of the best days yet and I thank The Lord every day that Suzanne and Doug made such a wonderful woman that I have married.

What a day!  We both woke up later than we have the past two days which allowed us to be fresh for the day.  We checked out of the hotel in Dublin and began our journey to Cork.  The ride through Dublin was challenging to say the least.  All of the street signs are posted on the sides of the building in size 2 font.  So far there has not been a single time that I have gotten to an intersection where is said “take a left at Billy O’Malley Jameson Street,” and I could actually see that I was at the correct intersection.  While on the subject of directions, this metric system over here is a pain in the butt.  When driving and it says, “take a left in 400 meters,” I have no instinctual understanding of how far that actually is.  They might as well be saying, “turn in 200 hotdog buns” as it is just as effective in my brain.

Once we got out of the city I was really able to bring Zippy, the affectionate name that I have given our car, up to speed.  You see,  Zippy is a special car, with special characteristics.  Zippy wants so badly to be a standard and not an automatic.  In fact, short of carrying around a bag of bricks to put behind the wheels, I still have no idea how to properly park the poor girl.  My only options when driving is:

  • A – Automatic
  • N – Neutral
  • R – Reverse

That is it!  It is also not possible to crank the engine without pushing down the brake, which always make me think that the battery is dead each time we get in the car.  I also have no idea who makes Zippy.  The car has a lightning bolt on the steering wheel which lends you to think she has a cool name like Zeus or Zoom, however five minutes behind the wheel throws that out the window.  Like I said, Zippy wants to be a standard and she really fights to get out of her first gears on her own.  Driving her is like waking up a 14 year boy for school.  She is grumpy and groans, but eventually gets going after some work.

Zues? Lightning?  Nope, Zippy!

Zues? Lightning? Nope, Zippy!

The rest of the trip from Dublin to Cork was wonderful.  It was overcast for much of the time, however as we got about an hour outside of Cork, the sun came out and we were able to really enjoy the rolling hills and the countryside.  Once we got into the Cork area Lindsey resumed her back seat driver behavior.  She has no tolerance for round abouts and large two story buses that take over the entire road.  Fortunately it is not a long distance from the highway to our hotel in Cork, it just meant that we had to get a cold beer in Lindsey to get her to calm down and get her heart to beat at a normal rate.

Post drive beer and lunch.

Post drive beer and lunch.

When we got to the hotel, they had not gotten the room ready for us yet.  I had asked for a room on the upper floors as I had read that the views of the city from the hotel are great and worth asking for.  The front desk offered to bring our luggage to the room once it was ready so that we could have a walk around or a drink while we waited.  We decided to head to the bar for a drink and a bite of food.  I did not want something heavy like a Guinness and Lindsey chose a Heineken which sounded light and was a delightful choice.  We both had a beer, she had an angus beef sandwich and I had a crab sandwich.  Our lunches hit the spot and when we were done we were able to head straight to our room and our waiting luggage.  The room is amazing, a large room with one wall as a ceiling to floor size window overlooking the river and the city.  This is by far one of the best hotel views I have had in my life (hopefully it will not be the last on this trip).

Sitting pretty.

Sitting pretty.

View from Cork hotel.

View from Cork hotel.

We left the hotel for a walk around the city.  There were only a handful of places that we wanted to see in Cork, but we did want to just have a walk around.  It is awesome that Lindsey and I are married to each other because we vacation the same.  We do not try to see everything and find walking around and watching people is just as enjoyable.  We ended up going to the Shandon clock tower and St Anne’s church.  Getting here involved a long walk up a bunch of steps.  This made the cute little cafe at the top a perfect spot for a break and two milkshakes.

Cork, such colors!

Cork, such colors!

Shandon Clock tower.

Shandon Clock tower.


Shandon Tower


Cathedral of St. Mary and St. Anne

We just kept following street after street chasing the next cool thing to look at.  I ended up seeing a cool-looking church on the top of a silly tall hill and we were off!  We trekked all the way up the hill, took some pictures of the church and headed back down.  It was already starting to get a bit warm, and scaling hills and walking miles was not helping.  By the time we got to the bottom I was getting some texts from work concerning an issue that was going on which had us heading back towards the hotel.


Pretty view from the top of the hill.


St. Vincent’s Church, top of a big ol’ hill!

I was able to get to my computer and have a look at the problem while Lindsey took a short unplanned nap. After work was done and naps had been taken, we got up and had a shower to get ready for dinner. The place that we had originally planned to go to ended up being closed this week which meant that we have to have a look around the area without our safety blanket of Yelp (such a good resource to find good places). We ended up going to the place right next to our original choice, a classical Irish restaurant called 14A. They had a 3 course special which we took advantage of. The starters were great, but unfortunately the main dishes were nothing to blow our socks off with. After dinner we returned to the hotel for a little bit of sleep medicine (a Guinness for me and a Rose [insert ‘e’ with apostrophe above that I am too lazy to find the ASCII version of]).

After our drinks we are going to head to bed for a early wakeup call in the morning. We want to get a head start on our “off the beaten path” adventure to visit the Ballycotton Cliffs, a location that has been the top of Lindsey’s places to visit since we started to plan this Ireland adventure. The cliffs are in a very small town on the coast, which has been very difficult to get a GPS to locate. The internet seems to only provide backwoods directions, “take the road left when you see a dog that responds to the name Muffin.” Hopefully we will be able to ask for directions when we get closer.

We plan to play on our nature walk and have a look at this small fishing town. Once we have our fill, we will head to Kilkenny. Also, sorry about the different picture sizes. I uploaded some from my computer rather than my phone and the app formats them differently. Tonight, like Zippy, I just don’t have it in me to fix it.


Dinner, Salmon for me and chicken breast for the lady. Her chicken was the size of a small dog.


Seems like every day!

Today’s letter of the day is ‘W’ for walking! The day started off early for Lindsey as she is still working on this jet lag business. She woke up at 4am and decided to head down to the gym and work out for a few hours. I made it till 6am, which puts me in a good position to be more acclimated to the time change.  We will see how well those words work for me.

We took advantage of the wonderful (free) breakfast at the hotel. Lindsey even put two things on her plate that she had no idea what they were! Of course she only smelled it and then it became mine. I have no idea what it actually was, only that it was delicious. I also had my first plate of Irish eggs and beans, which is a great combination for the morning.

The tour buses did not start up till 9am, so we went back to the room to straighten up the disaster of our luggage. We split up our clothes for the plane ride over just on the off chance that one of our sets of luggage did not make it all the way to Ireland. It is going to be a challenge to deal with the luggage, given that after today we will not be in the same place for more than one day until we get to Norway. This means a lot of pulling everything out and putting it back in for the rest of our Ireland journey. Fortunately, Lindsey is a wizard at folding clothes which keeps everything very neat.

We made a “plan” on what to see for the day, which was as basic as it could be. Out of twenty four stops on the tour bus we wanted to explore two of them. We decided to first go to St. Patricks Cathedral which was just a few stops further from where we get onto the bus. This church was amazing! A large very old church full of history.  They had a guided tour but I was honestly not in the mood to listen to someone talk about it all, so we just walked around looking at all the wonderful history. The church is full of old tombs and plaques that illustrate how long it has stood. The stained glass was amazing, although it was tough to get suitable pictures of them without the light washing it all out.

St Patrick's Catherdral

St Patrick’s Catherdral

St Patrick's Cathedral

Inside St Patrick’s Cathedral

After the church Lindsey’s, 4am early wake up was starting to catch up to her. Since we were not all that far from the hotel, we decided to walk back and get a nap in before lunch. As with our sleep cycle, our eating cycle is a bit off as well. We decided to have some lunch after our nap which ended up lasting until 2pm. By the time we got up and moving, we decided that having lunch this late was not practical. We made a reservation at a restaurant called Boxty Houst, in the Temple Bar area, and went off on the search for a bakery for an afternoon snack and coffee. We ended up a an delightful French bakery and had some tarts and coffee that filled us up all too much.

Grafton Street

Grafton Street

Le Petite Parisien (yummy tarts!)

Le Petite Parisien (yummy tarts!)

We decided to walk around the area and just see which each street leads us to. We ran into some wonderful churches, the Dublin Castle, Trinity College, the Temple Bar area, and lots of drunk people. When it was time for our reservation we had already walked 12 miles for the day!  As mentioned we went to a Boxty restaurant for dinner at the suggestion of my brother (I think he would hurt me if I passed on the opportunity). Boxty is a classic Ireland meal that is basically some form of meat inside of a potato pancake covered in a delicious gravy. Let me tell you it was amazing!  We were still pretty full from our snack, so the idea of a big meal was not fully appetizing. However, the meal was surprisingly light.  I got a beef Boxty and Lindsey had the chicken, both which came out minutes after ordering. There was some pickled cabbage side, which neither of us was too interested in. While eating, we had a nice conversation with two ladies from Wisconsin. They were here on a two week tour of Ireland and were, like us, heading out of Dublin tomorrow.

Dublin Castle

Dublin Castle


Dublin Castle (the faces freaked Lindsey out!)


Boxty Dinner, so good!

After dinner we were pretty spent and headed back to the hotel to relax a bit. We are now sitting at the bar working through the first of our free drink coupons, me with a Guinness and Lindsey with Prosecco (some girly wine thing). We will make our plan for tomorrow which will start with driving three hours in Ireland to Cork. Honestly, after walking around Dublin for the past two days, getting on the road with these crazy people scares the dickens out of us.  Lindsey started this trip assuming that she would drive everywhere and now I have been promoted to head driver and risk taker extraordinaire. I am sure that once we get out of the Dublin area and into the country, everything will be fine. It just getting past that first step that will be the fun part.


Oh Boy, did I try to get Lindsey to motorboat those bad boys!


Really?!? Texan BBQ in Ireland? Let’s not fool ourselves.


Thought of Ryan the moment I saw this!

Zombies!  This is honestly how I think people thought of us when they saw us walking around today. With little sleep and no room to go back to we were for sure struggling to stay awake. There is a nice Hop-on-hop-off bus tour that goes around the city that we were looking at doing which the room delay gave us a good opportunity to take advantage of.  It took a bit of a hike to get to one of the pickup spots, but we were able to find it and off we went on a twenty four stop tour. 

Saint Stephan's Square

Saint Stephan’s Square

The good thing about our “zombie” tour is that it allowed us some time to see which sites we want to go back and visit on Monday. It also saddened us to think that we can not just eat at bakeries all day; there are so many choices and so little time.   We did stop for a tour of Kilmainham Gaol (Gaol is pronounced Jail). This is a very old jail that has a pretty unsavory past, it really does help illustrate how terrible the Irish history actually is.  It is strange to be leaning against a wall to have the tour guide turn to you and say, “and right here is where five people were executed by firing squad”.  The principal reason of coming here is because it was the filming location of one of my favorite movies, “In the Name of the Father”, a must watch if you have no seen it.





By the time we got back on the bus we were dead tired.  I was falling asleep sitting up, and we were both very hungry. We just had to get through 10 more stops before we got back to where we started to get back to the hotel. We both all but leaped into bed for a “short” nap. I got about two hour of solid rest, while Lindsey knocked out four hours. We will plan to take some sleeping medicine tonight so that we can try to beat out the jet lag and get on the proper schedule tomorrow. We are in Dublin for another full day before heading to Cork on Tuesday. 

After waking up and showering off traveling we went to a quaint cafe called Green Nineteen for dinner. Lindsey was brave and got a chicken dinner that had ingredients that she did not fully recognize. I got the fish and chips which helps me to knock off another box in my Ireland Food bingo game. Our meals were both wonderful and dessert was fantastic.


We are now back at the hotel taking advantage of some of our free drink coupons.  Lindsey got some wine and I was trying to be manly and got some whiskey drink which came out looking like some sex on the beach disaster. I told Lindsey that  if I got one more of those and I would start to menstruate.  I went with a much more manly Guiness for my second round, my man card was returned with the bill. 



We plan on getting up tomorrow and checking out some of the old churches and castles. Of course we will follow our laid back vacation attitude of not needing to see and do anything. There is just as much value of getting a good vacation naps compared to seeing some 400 year old building 🙂









We made it!! The flight was long and as terribly uncomfortably as it could be. Lindsey got about three hours of sleep and I got about two, my shoulder was killing me but the Lunesta I took at least made me care less about the pain.

Getting through customs was a breeze then on to the biggest challenge, driving. We rented an automatic which is not the norm for around here. Driving on the left side is an experience, more so driving on the left side when there is no visibility is frightening. We made it to the hotel without too much hassle, only problem was that it is 8:30am and they have no rooms ready.

We will go ahead and start our day without the room and regroup for lunch and a nap during the afternoon.


Well we are now officially on the way towards a much needed vacation! The morning started early for me. I managed to turn on my side enough for my shoulder pain to wake me up. Once I was up there was no shutting off my brain, so 4:30am became my wake up time. This will make for a fun day if there is no sleep on the plane.

As if the grandparents were not doing enough, Lindsey’s mother is watching Baxter while we are gone. We dropped him off this morning. He always knows something is going down when he sees the luggage out. I don’t think he was expecting to see both of us leave. I am sure by now he has already jumped in the pool!  So much for that bath he got before we left. He is in good hands though and I a sure that he will enjoy himself. 

My loving mother brought us to the airport this morning which is a huge help as well. Just like going to movies I am very anal practical when it comes to arriving on time. For making flights on time this “practical” nature runs in overdrive. My loving bride is the opposite of this. If she could have her way should would walk around the airport until the plane door is closing and pull some wicked Indy Anna Jones dive roll through the closing door.  She is just cool like that. 

The ride from Houston to Newark was uneventful, Lindsey and I watched movies and I got to enjoy the wonderful Tapas snack box. Surprisingly enough the tapas snack box really is the best of all the snack boxes. It has some fairly healthy items and who can turn down olives on a flight?

We arrived in Newark with the same weather that we left in Houston, rainy. I am not sure if this is just to get us into the “September in Ireland” spirit, but we could care less. If it just means that we sit around in cafés drinking coffee all day then we are good with that.

We are about to get on the flight to Dublin, but had to stop and get one more drink before sitting for 7 hours. Be safe everyone!


Mexican food! Oh, wait…..I mean Jennifer! Tonight we packed Jennifer up and went for to a great Mexican food place for dinner. She will be spending the next few days with her Granna and Paw Paw which she is very excited for. We finished off the evening with a wonderful ice cream treat and Lindsey and I headed back home to finish the dreaded packing.


While I am not sure if she recognizes it, this trip will be the longest Lindsey has been away from Jennifer in her entire life. For me, this is nothing new. While it is no fun being away thankfully technology has it’s miracles that help close the gap.

It does help that when we told Jennifer that Mommy and Daddy were going on a trip without her she was much more excited at the promise of having slumber parties at all of the grandparents houses. On the downside Lindsey is going to have a much tougher time getting Jennifer back into our routine after a week and a bit of being spoiled by grandparents.

With Facebook and Twitter, why even bother with blogging these days? For me, this is going to be more of a brain dump of anything that is going on in Lindsey or my life.

The first fun bit will be our trip to Ireland and Norway, which is Lindsey’s first real international vacation (sitting in a resort does not count!). For me, it will be strange traveling with her when I am so use to heading out in the unknown world alone. I am sure I will need to drink a lot on this trip given that I will be the one driving….on the wrong side of the road. I thought her backseat driving was bad in Houston, it is going to be killer in another country!

After our trip I plan on documenting a lot of my cycling activities. This will be mostly for me to help keep track of progress and which disgusting energy gel I tried which made my tongue turn red for an hour.