Life

Northern Ireland. There We Were

My daughter and I had a great time in Northern Ireland.

We experienced the four-seasons-in-one-day Spring weather that Tokyo rarely sees, but since spending time with family was the #1 goal, Nature’s elements simply added to the spice of life.

Here are ten photos from our trip.

  1. Homecooked Roast Beef Sunday Lunch:

The potatoes and veg are from one of the big supermarkets but the meat’s from a local butcher or farm shop.

Sunday Roast

  1. The Bushmills Inn:

Sunday carvery lunch was £ 12.95 and highly recommended.

Bushmills Inn Carvery

  1. A Pint of Guinness:

This helped wash down the carvery lunch.

Guinness pint

  1. Dunluce Castle:

After lunch we headed to Dunluce Castle. Walking around the ruins (ably maintained by the National Trust) on a cold but sunny day certainly blew the cobwebs away!

Dunluce Castle

  1. North Antrim Coast:

I don’t suppose Eddie Bauer need any models for a maturing professional market segment?! Offers over $10,000 considered. I’ll even write the catalog copy 😉

North Antrim Coast

  1. Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge:

My Indiana Jones bravado got me across OK but coming back it seemed to be swaying more. Although only thirty meters high, the waves, rocks, openness, and the wind made this a wonderfully invigorating experience.

Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge

  1. Walking The Plank!

The Carrick-A-Rede Rope bridge does sway in the wind but the trick for a safe crossing is to use the ropes for balance; not to push out on, because they give!

That hand on the right is my Sister-in-law’s, as I helped her across. Petrified I might have been, however no real man admits or yields to his palm-sweating vertigo. About 3 meters from safety, and it showed!

Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge Windy Day

  1. The Giant’s Causeway:

Giant’s Causeway Northern Ireland

Shortly after this photo was taken the rain set in and didn’t stop for at least thirty-six hours, even turning to snow over the Glenshane pass.

The photo doesn&‘t do justice to the 40,000 basalt columns that Nature’s volcanic handiwork and the sea created many millions of years ago. In better weather you can spend a whole day here exploring the surrounding walks and sunset is said to be incredibly beautiful.

Giant’s Causeway

  1. Baby Finn MacCool And The Giant’s Causeway:

Here’s the Causeway Visitor Centre account of the mythology connecting the Irish giant, Finn MacCool, with the creation of the Causeway itself. Luckily for us, the retreating Scottish giant left behind some evidence of Finn’s hard work!

Giant’s Causeway Basalt

  1. Ulster Fry Brunch:

My youngest brother rustles up a great Ulster fry every weekend and we were treated to mouthwatering pork sausages and delicious soda farls. No mug of PG-Tips tea here. Fair Trade Colombian filter coffee it was.

Ulster Fry Brunch

What did I learn from this trip?

Well, even though Northern Ireland’s a small country there’s an amazing mix of beautiful scenery within just an hour or two’s drive.

Yet like many good things in life sometimes appreciation of what we truly have only comes when they’re beyond reach. That’s why it’s important to periodically connect with the people and places you value most.

Why, this very minute, through a glass darkly (see #3 above!), occasional business trips to Norn Iron present themselves for this former freelance technical copywriter, turned fiction writer. (status updated: 2020-02-22).

Have you been to Ireland, north or south?

What were the highlights of your trip?