Fitzgeralds and gang in Ireland
Debra and Tom Fitzgerald are now in Ireland with 38 folks who signed up to share with them a visit to the rural west coast, where the scent of peat fires, still used to heat, hangs heavy in the air. They're the Painesville couple who established their Fitzgerald's Irish Bed & Breakfast after falling in love with the land of their ancestors on several bicycling trips there. Now they take others to Ireland, departing Thursday for their most recent journey.
I invited them to share by email some of their experiences and agreed to post it to my blog. Here's what they've written:
We arrived safely on Friday morning and although we got a rainy start at the Cliffs of Moher, it turned out fine. We ferried across the Shannon River on the Tarbert
Ferry, stopped in Listowel for lunch, then arrived in the center of Dingle where we're staying at The Benners Hotel, where we had dinner after an afternoon of naps and individual explorations.
The next morning, we arrived in shifts at the Dingle Music School to learn to play the bodhran, the traditional Irish drum. Our education into Irish music surprised us with the news that the bodhram was introduced
in the 1950’s.
After lunch and some free time, we toured around the Dingle Peninsula to Slea Head, one of the most beautiful locations in all of Ireland. At the end of our bus tour we stopped at the Dingle Crystal factory for a personal demonstration by
the owner, Sean Daly, a former Waterford Crystal master cutter.
Afterwards, we could not resist the temptation to own a one-of-a-kind
pieces of Irish crystal. With the closing of Waterford Crystal last January, Sean
is one of just a few crystal artists remaining in Ireland. After dinner we went
to a local pub for traditional Irish music.