7 Years Good Luck:*)
On Saturday, I went with almost every international student at UL to Blarney Castle and Cork city. We left at 8:15, which is far too early if you ask me, and went the hour drive to Blarney Castle. The castle is huge and we could explore every nook and cranny of it. So, that’s exactly what Courtnee, Brittney, Mal and I did. We took our sweet time wandering the grounds of the castle and then made our way up to the top. Before getting to the top, we took detours to the kitchen, a girl’s bedroom, the family room, and the dungeon. In the dungeon, there was a tunnel that you could go through but it didn’t really take us anywhere. While Courtnee and Mal squirmed there way to the end of the tunnel, Brittney and I hung out. The ceiling was dripping water on us; naturally we look up to see if there is a source to this water. That’s when we found it: the biggest, grossest spider I have ever seen. If you know me, you will know I am not a fan of spiders. As a matter of fact, I will scream and run out of the room and make someone else kill it. I got out of that dungeon pretty quick. As I climbed the stairs to the top of the castle, the less room I had to maneuver. The stairwell got so small that my elbows were hitting the sides every time I took a step. Not comfortable. But once I made it to the top, the view was beautiful. Plus I was ready to smooch the Blarney Stone. Our bus driver was saying that if you kiss the stone, you will get 7 years of good luck. If you kiss the stone with tongue, you get 14 years of good luck. I certainly hope no one before me went for 14 years of good luck. I had misconceived notions about the stone. I thought it was a big rock that you could stand next to and kiss. Oh no. It is at the top of castle but it is situated at the bottom of a wall. I had to lay down on my back, grab two bars with my hands, and then slide my body towards the stone so I could kiss it upside down. Gross. The stone was slimy and thousands of other people have kissed it. My cousin was nice enough to inform me that the Blarney Stone is the most unsanitary tourist attraction in the world. Yummy. As gross as it was, I now have 7 years of good luck headed my way. Once everyone kissed the stone, we went through the poisonous garden and through the forest to the Badger Cave. Where again, there were spiders. Caves aren’t my thing. But by now it was time to head onto the bus to go to Cork. Fortunately, the rain had held off while we were at the castle, but it didn’t last while we were in the city. The first thing we all wanted to do was eat. We went to a local pub and I ordered the Irish stew. The stew had mashed potatoes, beef tips in a gravy, peas, and cauliflower. It was so delicious! Next, I wanted to find the English Market but that is easier said than done. We must have walked around in the rain for 20 minutes trying to find this place with the help of 3 different people that I asked along the way. They each pointed us in the right direction, but none of them had exact directions. Eventually we found it and if I lived in Cork I would shop there all the time. The market had a lot of fresh produce and meat that were very reasonably priced. After perusing the market, all of us were craving ice cream. What do we do? Find the nearest fast food place to get a shake, which happened to be the BK Lounge. So good. By this time, we were all soaked, full, and ready to take a nap. We boarded the bus and I attempted to fall asleep. But with the uncomfortable seats, the crazy driving, and the stops we made, it was impossible. I don’t understand why bus and plane seats have to be so uncomfortable. I would definitely go back to Cork since they have a lot more shopping opportunities. Next time, hopefully it won’t rain the entire time!