Aside

Travel: The luck of the Irish (and me getting to visit them!)

After a summer of madness as I trekked across the country, and Europe, to party at festival after festival, it was time to head to Ireland for the maddest get-together of all – my boyfriend’s Irish family for a huge wedding!

After catching our early morning flight from Birmingham Airport over to Waterford Airport (still the smallest and simplest airport I have ever travelled through), we landed to a huge welcome party as many of the family had arrived to pick up others arriving at the same time – it ended up with a crowd of around 20 of us gathered outside the airport with our bags and big smiles on our faces as we all loudly greeted each other and compared journeys.

Setting off on our 10-minute journey from the airport to The Creaden Bed & Breakfast, in Dunmore East, on the South-East coast, where myself and Mark were staying, we checked in and headed upstairs to unpack and sort ourselves out. I was delighted to sit down on the comfiest bed I have ever experienced and look out the window to see a stunning view.

I just loved waking up the following morning and laying in bed watching the boats sailing across the bay as the sun shone, despite previous weather predictions of heavy rain!

We headed straight up the stunning Haven hotel, where the wedding was being held, to meet the rest of the family for an afternoon of catching up, good food (particularly the speciality seafood chowder with Irish soda bread, and the freshly baked scones) and a few tipples. After a few hours, and with promises of a delicious evening meal with the whole family later on, myself and Mark headed off for a little walk back to the B&B to get changed for an evening stroll around the bay.

The views were magnificent and made you feel truly free as you breathed in the fresh sea air. I long to live in one of the stunning thatched cottages with a beautiful clear view across the ocean. The only shame was that the cottages had such small windows! We were thrilled to be back in Ireland, Mark to be closer to his family, and me, because Ireland is such a magical country that has the effect of making you feel as though you are the other side of the world to home.

After a walk, we headed back to the hotel where the wedding was to take place the following morning.

It was a place with mountains of character and an incredible view which we really got to experience later that night as we watched lightning fork across the sky, lighting up the whole bay.

After a delicious prime sirloin steak served with mash and vegetables in a sauce made up of Irish Whiskey, garlic, mushrooms, onions and cream – phenomenal – we sang happy birthday to Mark’s mum, Carmel, who celebrated her 50th in July.

The evening was spent working my way round most of the family to catch up and hear what tales they had to tell – including one cousin who had managed to break BOTH of his arms, another who was heading off to university and plenty more. After a few more drinks I found myself sat with yet another cousin (big family), an aunt/godmother and step-grandmother, watching the lightning and talking about the forthcoming wedding, and another that is due to take place next year in a castle! It was a lovely evening and exhausted us all, especially we who had been up since 5am travelling! We all headed to bed to rest up for the following day.

See my next post for the wedding and our final day in Ireland.

 

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