Cee’s Odd Ball Challenge – Ireland Edition

Odd ball items can be found anywhere.  But, here is a collection of photos I don’t think I have shared yet.  Check out the off ball side of Ireland for Cee’s photo challenge!

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Random Donkey Carving in Antrim

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Guinness in Baby Bottles Sign

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Jail art seen through a cell door at Kilmainham Gaol

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More Irish Donkeys

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Waterless Boats in Galway

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Large Building full of “stuffed” animals.  This deer lived a long time ago and was massive!

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Animal Graveyard at Powerscourt Gardens

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Animal Graveyard at Powerscourt Gardens

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Strange Stones at Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland

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Guinness Street Art in Dublin

 

To see some of my other photo challenges click here.

Fin McCool and his Giant Causeway – Northern Ireland

Pretty much anywhere you go in Ireland is awesome.  (Sorry, but it is.)  Some places just vary in the level of awesomeness.  Giant’s Causeway is a destination location in Northern Ireland that is worth the visit.  It has changed over the years in that there is now a gloriously large and overwhelming visitor’s center.  But, I appreciate the architecture and the audio tour is provides.  Along with this comes a fee to enter. (NOTE: visitors can walk directly down to the causeway from the road if they want to take a hike.  And, I will warn you that it is easier going down that coming back up!)

The causeway is a geological marvel found only in a handful of places in the world. (I am lucky to live near one of them called The Devil’s Postpile near Mono Lake.) The volcanic cooling created octagonal shaped stones that provide a “causeway” from Ireland to Scotland under the sea.  It is said the giant Fin McCool once created this causeway by stomping his feet.  It was also the roadway that led Scotland’s giant to come knocking on Fin’s door.  Luckily for the Irish Fin’s quick thinking wife dressed him up in baby clothes and put him in a baby carriage.  She served tea to the Scottish giant and told him Fin’s father would be home soon.  Seeing the size of the giant baby the Scottish giant fled home thinking the father must be 10 times larger!

Giant’s causeway is situated on the sea with a view of Scotland on a clear day and the Norther island peninsulas.  The causeway road will also drive you along arguably some of the most painfully gorgeous scenery in the world.  We were lucky to have a clear bright sunny day leaving me to think that life, in that moment, could not possibly be any better.

Spend the rest of your day visiting Bushmills, Dunluce Castle, Portrush, Carrick-a-Reed rope bridge, and maybe even Dark Hedges.  My favorite thing to do though is to just meander along the Causeway highway and see where the road takes you.  Because, wherever it takes you I guarantee you will enjoy it.

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Giant’s Causeway Visitor’s Center

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Stones

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Pools filling up

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The iconic wall

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Columns

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Fin McCool’s boot

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Fin McCool’s mother’s chimney

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For more Irish shenanigans click here

For another post on Giant’s Causeway click here…

Giant’s Causeway – County Antrim, Northern Ireland

My brother Sean and I had long heard stories of Giant’s Causeway and driving all the way to Ireland’s Northernmost tip in County Antrim was a must for us.  The journey was half the fun but this geological wonder and UNESCO Heritage site was worth the travel.

Giant’s Causeway is made up of area of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns which ultimately hailed from a volcanic eruption.  This natural wonder if amazing to behold and begs legends to be told of its grandeur.

Our grandmother had long told us the story of the Giant Finn McCool.  After we got old enough to do proper research I heard stories of Finn McCool in many different ways.  But legend has it that the stepping stones were created when Finn scooped up part of Ireland and threw it at an enemy causing a walkway between Ireland and Scotland.

One day Finn heard another Giant Benandonner was coming to fight him.  Unsure if he could fight off this giant he devised an ingenious plan.  Finn’s wife dresses him as a baby and hid him in a giant cradle.  When Benandonner arrived and saw the size of the baby he realized quickly that its father Finn must be of enormous size and stature.   Benandonner  ran scared back to Scotland via the causeway never having seen the Giant he came to fight.

   
   
Here are a few photos from the way back machine. If memory serves these photos were taken on Sean and I’s first trip to Ireland in 1999.