Access to free wifi has been rather patchy hence the gap in the blog posts, for which I apologise. I’ve turned east reaching Blarney Castle outside Cork. The castle is famous for its ‘Blarney Stone’ which is located at the highest level of the castle battlements. Legend has it that those who kiss the Blarney Stone will receive the gift of eloquence. So if you notice an improvement in the quality of blog posts from this point onwards then perhaps it works. However my understanding is eloquence is related to speech and you way have to wait for an opinion from Jan. I was amused to read that for a period Victorian visitors were kissing the wrong stone incorrectly believing it was in the corner of the tower and easily accessible.
Before attempting this I happened to read a local news
article stating that the kissing of the Blarney Stone was to cease on health
& safety grounds effective the end of the month (30 April 2016). The
article also mentioned so locals were reputedly urinating on the stone at
night. I did lick my lips afterwards and can confirm there was no taste of fizz
I found the castle ruins even more interesting than the stone.
This is the view of the keep as you approach the castle from the visitor
entrance. The arrows in the above photo point to the garderobe outlets. The
visible portion is a vertically angled stone slab and is a sewage outlet. The
small stone enclosed balcony is in the Earl’s bed chamber. It appears he was
entitled to an en-suite. The base of the balcony had a ‘His & Hers’ hole
which had been filled with concrete. All the sewage was discharged to the base
of the Keep which just happened to be the location of the dungeon and the guard
post. I did wonder whether this is the origin of the expressions “In the
****!” and “A ****** job”. some of the interior chambers are completely made
of stone along the with outer walls. However the majority of the interior is
now exposed to the elements as the timber roof and floors have gone.
Effectively the Keep is a hollow shell.
As you can see in the above photo, there is a gap in the floor of the
battlement which would have enabled the defenders to dump hot sand or boiling
oil/water onto any attackers attempting to scale the walls or breach the
Cobh is an attractive town with a maritime history and an association with
the Titanic. Yet another Titanic museum can be found here!
RMS Lusitania. which was
sunk off the coast during WW1 by a German U-boat.
The most dominate feature in the town is the cathedral. St
Colman’s is one of the largest cathedral in the republic and is also
relatively modern being completed in 1915.
The booked accommodation was on the outskirt of the city and rather than
attempt to drive into the city I elected to take the light rail.
(1775 –1847) an Irish political leader in the first half of the 19th century. He
campaigned for Catholic emancipation—including the right for Catholics to sit in
the Westminster Parliament. The statue is on O’Connell St in the centre of the
city. It’s yet another location renamed after independence. Previously it was
named Sackville Street', named after Lionel Sackville, 1st Duke of Dorset.
This is the memorial to the great potato famine
which occurred during the 1880’s. The famine forced tens of thousands to
emigrate around the world and was a major contributing factor to the Irish