Arriving In Ireland

Greetings from Ireland!

After a smooth 7ish-hour flight last Wednesday, we arrived safely in the capital of Dublin. We got on the plane at 7 in the evening (Chi time) and walked out at 9 in the morning the next day (Ireland time). I got a few hours of off-and-on sleep during the flight, but I think Isaiah was too amped up from the individual screens we could watch TV, movies, play games, etc. that I don’t think he slept at all.

But that didn’t prevent him from doing a top-notch job driving our bright red rented Skoda on the left-side of the road, from the right side of the vehicle, with his knowledge of driving a manual car slightly rusty – but it came back quickly. (Oh and of course you use your left hand to shift gears with first gear being farthest away from you.)

We kept asking, “Are we qualified to waltz into this country and start driving?” On very little sleep, no less. But with me navigating with a map from the car rental agency, we made our way through the bunches of roundabouts (those can be confusing when you’re still trying to wrap your mind about staying on the left!) in the city and headed due west to the coast. A beautiful 3-hour drive.

We knew the house we rented was in the town of Fanore and luckily Isaiah remembered where it was on the map, since apparently it’s too small of a town to get a mention on the only map we had. Our landlord’s address was simply her name, Fanore, County Clare, Ireland. No street names or house numbers – everyone knows everyone. So we arrive in Fanore and spotted a small work team constructing a building, so stopped to ask if they knew of Christina, our landlord. Sure enough, one of them did and told us to follow him – he needs to go that direction anyway, and lead us straight to her place. Nice!

Our place is located behind Christina and her family’s house. We’re loving our cozy apartment that was recently redone. The views out the windows are the best part. Lovely hillside to one side and the Atlantic Ocean to the other.

After a couple good, long nights of sleep (somewhere around 15 hours and 10 hours consecutively those first nights!) we’re feeling pretty rested and back to normal. We took a nice walk the other day. Here I am leaving our driveway.

Our walk started out with beautiful and sunny weather, then it became overcast and rained for a little bit, and then went back to being sunny again.

We’ve also already gotten some groceries at Fitzpatrick’s SuperValu in a nearby town. About half the drive is on a narrow road (most are rather narrow – as shown below!) right along the ocean.

We’re still blown away by the scenery and I have to remind Isaiah to watch where we’re going. I’m a definite beginner when it comes to manual driving, so Isaiah will be found behind the wheel for the most part. He’s turned into a real gentleman here in Ireland though – opening the left-side door of the car, realizing that no, that is not the driver’s side after all, and then playing it off as a debonair act of service for his wife, the passenger. Much to get used to!


12 thoughts on “Arriving In Ireland

  1. Good morning Isaiah and Allison. It is Tuesday morning here around 7 am here in my Kalona office and I just connected to your Ireland blog. The home looks new and comfortable and the location looks great. I look forward to reading and seeing more.

    • Yes – wonderful, Kathy! It’ll be like we’re all here together. And you’ll have to send some pics of beautiful Iowa farmland from time to time b/c really, that just can’t be beat!

    • Actually we’re in Ireland for two months just for fun. A “sabbatical.” We leave at the end of May for Paraguay – and that’s where we’ll have a few months of training and then our two year service term. And you’re living it up in Guatemala right now?? One of my goals is to work on my Spanish – I might need your expertise!!

  2. Oh, I love these pictures. It reminds me of my time in Northumberland, England! The narrow roads and beautiful scenary!

  3. Very cool idea to start this blog! So nice of you to “share” your adventure with us and also have all the details to look back on! The scenery looks absolutely wonderful!


    • Thanks, Kim! It should be fun to update and is nice to still feel some “community” of home by sharing and keeping in touch. I’m hoping the wave of illness is about done washing over your family!

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