Thursday, October 30, 2008

..just checkin'

I'm currently logged in at the Library on the free wireless and sitting by myself somewhere over in the Fiction section between "How Green Was My Valley" and "Moby Dick"....

Why you may ask? ...Because after we had a Verizon Tech at our house for most of the day yesterday we still don't have internet. ARGH!

So... I'm just checking my E-mails today and hopefully I will be able to post again sometime this weekend.


Only one day left until Halloween and I don't know what I'm going to be!

Maybe I'll be a Irish Poet.... Anyone have a Meerschaum Pipe I can barrow?

I do have an old clay one my father gave me, but I'm afraid the spirits about may break it....


Saturday, October 25, 2008

How can you not love a cat named Guinness...

Since I've been back I have been kicking back. I spent yesterday with the bIRD filming the last segment of my videos, hanging out and working on the cover for his latest poetry book and attending a poetry reading by Dan Wilcox.

Today I made Chili for the store wide Chili Taste Test at work, and gott my pics and videos loaded onto my backup hard drive so I can begin to work on the travelogue. I went for medium hot on the Chili so I don't expect to find myself in the winners circle, I did represent though!


saraH has wanted a new cat since Mooshee died. So when I left for Ireland I made a deal with my her; if she cleaned up the Laundromat while I was gone she could get a cat while I was away. My idea was that the cat would bond first to her and not me. It was a good plan but somehow flawed.

Guinness has bonded to me and I to him as well. How can you not love a cat named Guinness, he even has a nice foamy head on his chest.

"Guinness the Cat"
Even the Dog likes him.


I'm not going to say just when the first travelogue will be posted. Some information and notes that I took were mailed home, because I had accumulated so much, that it was either mail something or leave something behind. After I post this blog I will begin writing the first one. I may post it tomorrow, or I may post it next week. Obviously I don't want to leave anything out so I am taking my time and cross checking my facts.

"How's 'bout ye!"

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Doctor! You've parked the Tardis up against a fence! are we ever going to get out of here?

We made it home safe late last night; Jaffa Cakes and all...

The PuddleJumper from Boston was not fun... The Pilots up front were giggling as we drifted right and left, the right and left again. I was doing the "Our Father Mantra" from the moment we took off until the moment we touched down safely.


The Blackthorn Shillelagh that I brought back for Mom came in handy as we dragged our "lagged" butts from one end of the airport to the other weighted down with baggage and souvenirs...


In response to a comment left while I was en route and/or unable to connect to the net: bBird, I had intended to be less obscure but time and internet was limited. Also, you know perfectly well who the "Mystery Guest" is.... to let the rest of you in on some of it: The "Mystery Guest" sent me a note before I left which I post here:

I think those of you who know the "Mystery Guest" can make the connection here. ...but if I gave away his true secret super hero iDennisity he wouldn't be the Mystery Guest now would he... :)


With the exception of a few deliveries of Jaffa Cakes, I will be spending the next few days acclimating; then I intend to begin the travelogue that I had intended to write, before i realized the internet connections were going to be as sporadic as they were.


P.S.: Devo gave me my first tastie of "O'Beez Raw Honey-Ale" when I got home! " mmmm!

Monday, October 20, 2008

"Sláinte Mhaith, Mystery Guest!"

We visited my establishment in D4 last night. I'll be handing out business cards. The guys who keep following around and smoking my Cigars were there too! (How did they know I was going there?) Even the "Mystery Guest" showed up and bought me a Guinness with a double shot of Paddy's on the side!

"Sláinte Mhaith, Mystery Guest!"


We saw the Book of Kells today and visited the Guinness Storehouse. I bought "Guinness the kitten" a Golf ball and I bought a Rubber Rugby Ball for "Duet the dogie" so they will have souvenirs too.


Believe it or not, we are ready to come home. I miss my own shower and my cold morning coffee with real cream. (...if theres one thing I can't stand its suspended whey...)


"If I could find a Tardis around here some place we would be home right now...."

"Ahhh, Doctor, which one is the Tardis?
...and how do we get back home?"

"How's 'bout ye!"

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Latest Breaking News...Jaffa Crisis Averted....

Dear "Baby-girl"...,

I wasn't sure if I could get the Jaffa Cakes through Customs and I thought they might take them away and toss them in the trash so I ate them all just to be safe.


Off to Dublin to meet "the Mystery Guest"....

"How's 'bout ye!"

Saturday, October 18, 2008

...Trimming the hedges....

I think this was the day we finally got over having to drive so close to the hedges... There are no shoulders on most roads here and the width of the road hasn't changed since dogcart days. This was actually recorded on day 4 I believe. I am posting it now because I have finally gotten around to it, what with the lack of good connections along the way. I am giving it a separate blog and I will post about Ballyarr... tomorrow with any luck!

"How's 'bout ye!"

Friday, October 17, 2008

Days 8 And 9...the successful attempt!

I got a nice letter from Lesley Gilmour from Winnipeg, MB, Canada. I will be writing back soon after we reach the states again. It's very cool when I receive letter's like that, (sometimes I feel like I'm writing in a dark room to myself!) Then out of the blue someone who gets it, gets back to me. Thanks Lesley!


On Wednesday we toured the N.I. Causeway Coastal route: Mussenden Temple, Portrush (where my ancestor Mary (Pollock) Gilmour came from), and of course Old Bushmills Distillery. I've decided to post a serial travelogue after we are done as I am running out of storage space and the Computer is full. The 16 gig disc I bought before leaving was incompatible and unformatable. Pics and videos of this beautiful section to come at a later date.


On Thursday we started out at the Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge, (...and got SOAKED; just before we reached the Bridge! ...we saw it coming but it came on so fast that we had no choice but to turn our backs to the hard driving rain AND sleet!

First our A**'s got wet, then they got pelted with hail! ...No worries... passed over and we walked like cold wet tin soldiers down to the Bridge entrance.

The attendant smiled and quipped: "We should be good for be a half an hour before another one comes through..."
Here's a quick video of the successful attempt:


we went to see The Fureys in Strabane on Thursday, it was wonderful! The Alley is a small 200 seat Theater and there isn't a bad seat in the house. More on the later...


Here is a pic of Greenmount at Sunset on the 16th before we jumped in the car again and headed to Strabane for the show:

How many shades of Greenmount can you count?


....We went to Belfast today and PRONI was a bust. I managed to verify what I already knew; but the only way to really sort out anything else, would require a weeks worth of in depth research and many hours of Micro film. Great if you live here, but not if you don't....


After we went to PRONI we bounced uptown and we were rewarded for our persistence. I GOT TO MEET GILLIAN GILMORE! The Associate Editor of The Ulster-Scot, the official newspaper of the Ulster-Scot Agency. I signed up for a subscription to the Newspaper, joined the Ulster-Scots Language Society, and received a reprinting of "BESTY GRAY or, HEARTS OF DOWN: A tale of Ninety Eight", AND! A copy of "The Low Country Boys" latest CD too! (Pastor Brian you are REALLY gunna love this one!)

Thank-you SO MUCH Gillian! We listened to it twice through on the way back to Omagh!


"How's 'bout ye!"

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Day 7 , The best of Moville and Donegal so far...

These are some of my favorite Moville pics:

The Foggy view towards the Foyle from Breahead House.

A tree in the Derry City Graveyard...

(I thought it was going to tell me not to touch
the apples and then start throwing them at me...)

From Moville Quay (pronounced: "Key")
looking North at Lough Foyle.

Looking South towards Derry.

I met an Angel named "Michael" on the Quay at Moville... ...tell you all about later... working on a poem that I had to get up to write last night at about 3 am...

From "Gianan of Aileach" the Ruins of the O'Neil's Fortress
damaged by Murtagh O'Brien in the 12th Century
looking towards Donegal, in the direction of "Ballyarr."

Gotta EAT something now after a the stop at Bushmills....

"How's 'bout ye!"



Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Day 6, Running behind on my Posts...

Here we are in the "Lime Tree" again, eating and drinking, and absorbing an incredible day!
Unfortunately todays Pic's will have to wait until we get back to a second outlet so I can load them on to the Computer.

Here is a Pic from our last morning at Greenmount Lodge:

My feet are in the frame so you can see I am actually "Walking the Sod!"


After Greenmount we stopped at Lough Neagh
to see the Ardboe Cross.

At the Beaghmore stones I decided to walk deep into the Bog to get just the right pic, It was worth it but I managed to illustrate the phrase "Bogged Down." in the process...

Landscape from deep in the Bog.

"Smilin' on the inside
And the outside!"


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Day 4 ...This has been everything I could ever have hoped for and more!

We have found that Internet connections can be few and far between ....

We are sitting in a pub named "The Lime Tree Bar" in the Tower Hotel on "The Diamond" and I have purchased a 1 Day pass for about 8.00 GBP = 13.7362 USD.

Steve and Richard are eating and I am blogging...


I sent this out as a Virtual Post the other night.
(...somehow I doubt they realize what
the word "Hump" means in Amerikay...")

Because of the unreliable prospects of the next time I might be able to blog I am skipping to today and keeping this short.


At the Beaghmore Stone Circles... I just couldn't resist....

I got some GREAT Video too!


This is Steve's Silly Ireland Picture.
You have to have at least one.

Richard and I at Brackfield Brawn adjacent to
the Cumber Presbyterian Church Last night when we arrived.

Where we attended worship today! It was their yearly traditional harvest service. Afterwards we went back to Alan McKinney's for wonderful lunch provided by his lovely wife Anna. We had "Great Craic!"

Afterwards, we "Walked the Sod." We found all of the info I needed at the Ulster Migration Center yesterday the matched up with my Griffith's data so we were able to pin point the location of the Gilmour's tenancy!!!!

I have Copies of the Maps and pictures but I have not yet loaded them into the Computer so I can post them.

However! I can say that in the Church of the Trinity I found one headstone that confirms and expands the Glenn genealogy! (Barb, Kay, I am going to do a Rubbing so I can bring it back.) It takes us back to 1888 and leads me to believe that Alexander Gilmour met Jane Glenn while he was a Prentice Cooper and working at the Glebe.


I did manage to get these 2 shots last night with the Harvest Moon! Click on them to inlarge for full effect!

The Cumber Parish, Trinity Church with a graveyard filled
with Jane Glenn's Mother, Father, Brother James and....

Check out the Sunset reflection in the sign....

"I've to bed soon." was a very busy relaxing day.

This has been everything I could ever have hoped for and more! We found the "Scribe Tree", the old "Iron Bridge" (...I was Lead there by The Higher Power!) I stepped in cowflop and never even noticed! We determined from the maps that the Glenn's and Gilmour's lived across the street from each other. We learned that you pronounce the River Faughan with allot of spit as if you're clearing your throat. Cover the Kids ears now! ( sounds much like "River F**KEN") We finished up at "Robert Knobbs Pub" ...authentic Ulster Pub: Peat Fire and etc.... (...complete with young underage drinkers and MTV.... you can't have everything...)


THANK-YOU Alan and Anna! Steve, Richard and I will be talking about today for some time to come. This was defiantly Craic!

"How's 'bout ye!"


Friday, October 10, 2008

Day 1 ...the invasion of the Boyne...

First Day:

...Got lost several times.... Drove around Airport area a couple of times. Maps don't match up very well with the GPS.... ...Had some really awesome Donuts at a Petrol Station while getting directions. Almost got creamed while making a "U"wee as per the GPS in Dublin...

AHHHH! I'll never do that again!!!!


...Saw the "Bru na Boinne" and "Knowth" Burial Chamber's AKA: (New Grange) on the way to our first nights lodging near Omagh Yesterday. Steve's people are from this area and it is quite possible that they may have had some part in it's history and incarnations from the Neolithic times upto and including the 1800s.


Bru na Boinne AKA: New Grange.

Some of you who work with me may recognize the "Whorls" from
the design's that I draw in the ashtrays in the kitty litter
after I am done cleaning them...
(I'm not there so I'm not doing that now....)

Inside the tomb at "Knowth".
No pictures were allowed in "Bru na Boinne"
or I would have taken some pictures of the
Carved in Stone Graffiti from the 1840's.
(" gotta be really serious about your Graffiti
if your gonna do it with a chisel!")
(...I was looking for Steve's
ancestral names the "Quinlan's"
but alas it was dark and he ran out
when they turned the lights out...)

(...just kidding...)

This is my brother Richard on top of the Knowth Site.

The (3) "Bru na Boinne" Sites are located in a triangle
inside an oxbow on the River Boyne.
(...Yes bIRD, here is your "Water Source" at the Sacred Place...)
(We didn't visit the third site ("Dowth")
as we didn't have enough time...)

"Would you look at that! ...its a Real Irish bIRD!"

It was hard to find our way out of there as you can see...
(...I thought the sign said Far Out! )


Went to a Tower outside of Kells that was basically a crumbled mass in a cow field. I had to climb a Stone hedgerow to see it. I guess for illustrative purposes I should have taken a picture any way...

...and then Steve and Rich could have taken pictures of me trying to get down... The thing was at least 6" tall....

("...we drove around an hour looking this what?")



....I may be able to find employment here yet....

"Ah, yeah, my name is really "Derril", and this is my
"other brother from another Mother..."
...Larry, ...Larry O'Brien..."


After we lost our way in the Kells area, we headed north: It took several hours in the Rain, on the left hand side of the road, with BIGASS TRUCKs coming at us encroaching on OUR SPACE! ...I had the window down to help defog cause we didn't think we would need a car with Air conditioning,at one point and, well, ...there is NO SHOULDER! a branch came WHACK into the car!

It was dark and I couldn't find the window button to close it either!


The GPS is only good in Ireland not Northern Ireland as it is UK and not part of the software Richard purchased!

...and now that we're in UK the speedometer doesn't match!

(...I will Post pictures of the hedgerows and how close they are to the road tomorrow...)

The Gage is Kilometers, Speed is in miles, AND WE SUCK AT MATH!

...especially at high speeds!


BELIEVE IT OR NOT! We arrived safely!

I would blog about our time today in Strabane but blogger is being a weenie and we need some sleep....



"How's 'bout ye!"

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

lift Off!

This is a prerecorded Message!

"How's 'bout ye!"


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

1 Today!

I didn't get up until almost 1 today. I was up until almost 1 last night, but I wasn't packing or doing the things I should have been either. I just couldn't put down "An Irish Country Village" by Patrick Taylor. It's the sequel to "An Irish Country Doctor". If you haven't yet read them you should.

"Now I'm done with that, I've to call the cow's home an get packin' like a bee on a hot brick!"

"How's 'bout ye!"


Monday, October 6, 2008

The 2 do list:

This is how I spent the day:
  • I gathered stuff from my safe: Passport & etc.
  • Entered some E-mails to my Virtual Post Card List.
  • Talked to my Boss/Landlord about my Kids doing the Laundromat while I am gone; allaying his fears.
  • Had Breakfast and conversation with Benevolent Bird.
  • Entered some E-mails to my Virtual Post Card List.
  • Went to Wally World and bought some throw-away "Old Fart" Velcro sneakers and put Gel inserts in them. They should go nicely with my "Old Lady Support Hose Stockings...
  • Entered some E-mails to my Virtual Post Card List.
  • Walked and Fed the "Deut".
  • Entered some E-mails to my Virtual Post Card List.
  • Drove saraH to work and I went to the Post Office and picked up the mail, when I got back to the car I opened up a card from my 3rd Cousin Barb and cried spontaneously!
The envelope contained a laminated Irish Blessing that went straight into my otherwise empty wallet and will remain there always. Thank-you Barb! I needed a "Good Cry!"
  • Blogged
  • Cram for Bible Study. to Bible Study!


"Re" yesterday's blog...

Panic averted:

Devo came home and we determined what was wrong with the charger. It was wired wrong! Hour and 20 Minutes later we had it rewired, re-hot-glued and the Batteries were recharged. Crisis solved by my "Magic-Kid!"

Sunday, October 5, 2008

3 Days left: Panic sets in...

Steve and I drove out to my Dad's Grave today after Church to do an intro Video for our trip. Richard wasn't feeling well so he stayed home. That was about 11:30 this morning; it's now going for 3:00 p.m. Here's the thing, I was assuming that I knew what I was doing and had followed all the directions translated from the manufacturer from Chinese into "Ingrish". I thought I had figured out all the backwards grammar and conditioned all the batteries. Turns out it didn't work.

Let me give you an example: "Pecial to charge design of way of going back, to excessive discharge or is it use and lead to the fact voltage not to pass the low battery to put for a long time, can still start and charge normally."


So we are going to go back later this evening and try it again after I try to recharge the Old Battery with my Camera Dock. I bought 2 "NEW" Batteries and a Charger SO I WOULDN'T have to drag the Dock along....

I guess I'm "Tied to the Dock..." (...yes I do realize the Poetic Justice of that statement...)

Again, the Lord sent me out in the field and "made me to fail" before I got to Ireland and then realized the expensive cheep piece-o'-x@#+!!! didn't work.

(was that last statement a ironic contradiction or what?)


...I think I'll call that an "Oxy-ironical-ism"...

So, yeah: "Practice, Practice, Practice."

Work out the "Chinese Bug's"

...or you may end up wasting one" houror" more....


P.S.: The 5 day weather from the last post has changed. We might be driving into Omagh in Heavy Rain. If so the first stop will likely be the Pub. ;)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

...only 4 Days to GO Time!

I'm done with my last day of work before going. I gathered a list of E-mail addresses today for "Virtual Post Cards" I figure if I send regular posts home from Ireland I'll be back before most of them. This way they will be "As it Happens" so to speak. I intend to blog also when I can. I'm thinking that My Videos will be edited and uploaded when I return as the idea of paying for "By-the-minute" to upload them will likely not be cost effective.

It was a long day at work; I'm going to Clean the Laundromat and hit the sack so I'm fresh for Church in th A.M. I'll build the Group Mailing lists tomorrow after Service. Richard, Steve and I are going to do some "prep stuff" in the afternoon that I will explain about at a later date.

Hey! I just looked at the 5 day forecast and things are looking good at least for the first couple of days! If anyone is interested here is the BBC link ...

Omagh by the way, is the Town in County Tyrone we are staying in for the first few days so we can visit the Center for Migration Studies and the Ulster Heritage Park. We are going to see if we can locate the actual plot of ground where the Gilmour's Cooperage stood based on our Griffith's Data. You pronounce it: "Oh-Ma".


Friday, October 3, 2008

...Days to Lift Off:

It's Mom's 83rd Birthday Today!
Happy Birthday Mom!!!