On Saturday night, we arrived back in Sydney. The plane was on time, customs at Sydney airport was quick and the taxi ride was speedy.
The pic above is roughly what we saw when the plane came in last night – a beautiful view of Sydney by night. [Pic above is courtesy of Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/avlxyz/3542538662/]
We are now staying at Mum’s place for a few days in Sydney, catching up with family.
Mum with her new Inis Meàin mittens.
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We stayed in London for a couple of days between leaving Ireland and arriving back in Australia.
After travelling on the underground from our hotel near Heathrow to Leicester Square …
… we had a look around Covent Gardens markets …
… then picked up our theatre tickets for the westend play, The Cripple of Inishmaan with Daniel Radcliffe.
It was a great play about the lovely island of Inis Meàin. Written by Martin McDonagh, the play is described as a dark comedy. Here is the story of the play as described on Wikipedia:
Set on the small Aran Islands community of Inishmaan off the Western Coast of Ireland, c. 1934, the inhabitants are excited to learn of a Hollywood film crew’s arrival in neighbouring Inishmore to make a documentary about life on the islands. “Cripple” Billy Claven, eager to escape the gossip, poverty and boredom of Inishmaan, vies for a part in the film, and to everyone’s surprise, the orphan and outcast gets his chance.
After missing the island so much over the last few days, it was nice to see scenes from it again as the play’s backdrops and to hear some conversations about Inis Meàin.
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On Wednesday 26 June we arrived in Holyhead, Wales …
with plenty of Welsh signs ..
We picked up a hire car
And drove across Wales to London
[Not many pics from this trip as we had done this before a few months back.]
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When we left Australia in December 2012, we had Julia Gillard as our Prime Minister after she took over from Kevin Rudd. Now we have Kevin Rudd as our Prime Minister, as of today, who took over from Julia Gillard!
Source of pic: http://resources3.news.com.au/images/2012/02/21/1226277/511427-gillard-and-rudd.jpg
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Today, we are leaving Ireland, heading across to Holyhead in Wales on the ferry. Just a few minutes ago, the ferry left the port of Dublin. It’s a strange feeling to know that our lovely six months in Ireland is at an end. We are both looking forward to coming back somehow, sometime soon.
The sea is very calm today.
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Walking through the streets of Dublin today, I noticed some of the first words I learned in Irish when we first arrived on Inis Meàin – the words for “be quiet”! No, I wasn’t told to be quiet but I heard one of our neighbours say “bi ciuin” very softely to his cat when it was getting close to the cat’s feeding time. When I asked what the phrase meant, he explained it meant “be quiet”.
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The trip across from Galway to Dublin allowed me to catch up on some of my work and, because we had a bit of spare time before we arrived in Dublin, we stopped off at Maynooth College in the town of Maynooth, just outside Dublin.
Mum’s grandfather, my great-grandfather, John Joseph Walters (1871-1935) worked here before he left Ireland to live in Australia. He worked at Maynooth College, mending the garments of the priests who were studying in the seminary.
What a beautiful old grand place this is.
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After intending to visit this tiny Galway cafe, Cupàn Tae, we visited there today during our last hour in Galway for a while. It’s a cafe that specialises in Irish tea, as the name suggests.
Although it looks very pretty, flowery and feminine both inside and out …
The men of Galway are encouraged inside too.
In we went …
After deciding to sit outside (too hot and crowded inside), we ordered Galway Cream Tea / Uachtar (tea with a hint of coffee, a specialty of Cupàn Tae) and chocolate cake.
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