After finally getting back from the Liverpool trip, I was exhausted. I fell asleep at about 9pm on Wednesday night, the day I had gotten back, and slept until around 12pm the next day. It was a sleep I had been yearning to achieve for the past week. Given all the traveling that had occurred in the past week, we had planned to take it easy for the weekend. Three of my friends, Kelly, Laurel, and Erin, and I signed up to go on a free day trip to the Giant's Causeway sponsored by the International Student Society on campus. We left campus at around 8am on Saturday morning and after a 3 hour coach bus ride, arrived at our first destination on the trip, the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge. It's a famous rope bridge about 3 feet wide and 60 feet long suspended 100 feet in the air which connects the mainland to a tiny island named Carrickarede. Back in the good old days, it was used by fisherman but now stands simply as a tourist attraction. To get from the parking lot to the actual bridge itself was about a 20 minute walk along a path with cliffs and mountains surrounding it, stunning views in fact. The weather was perfect that day which made for great pictures.
Crossing the bridge and exploring the island a bit was fun but honestly walking to the bridge with all of the surrounding scenery was my favorite part. As you can see from the picture, it was a bit windy outside but my GoPro seflie stick never fails to provide for a great angle for a great picture.
Continuing our stay in Ireland for the weekend, we visited a nearby town on Sunday called Howth. Its a small town on a peninsula adjacent to Dublin Bay. It took about 45 minutes to get there all said and done through the use of a bus and a train. I like to think of it as a fishing town given its size, location and the presence of all the small shops and fishing boats. It was fun to walk around for the day, explore the shops, and take in the views on the water. We had fish and chips for lunch at a place called Beshoff's, recommended to us as being the best place for fish and chips in Dublin. I might not be a food connoisseur but I know a good french fry when I taste it and they sure had it. A potent potato flavor with just the right amount of crispiness on the outside. A great day all in all for the 4 hours spent there.
The next morning, we got up and went into the city where they had a large market going on called the Limerick Milk Market. Yes, believe it or not they sold more than just milk. We had lunch there and walked around the city center a bit more until our train came at 2pm. It was a short stay but a great one, enough to get a feel for the city of Limerick.
Although I love traveling to other parts of Europe, I've come to realize how *lucky* it is that I have the opportunity to study in a place where my home base has enough places to visit even if I chose to take a break for a weekend. Ireland has so many beautiful places, many within an hour or a few away. I'm still traveling Ireland in search of a pot of gold and although I haven't found it yet, the memories that have been made are pure gold to me.