I woke up to moans. The couple in the next room was having too much fun. It was 6 AM and I wanted to sleep some more. Lucky bastard. Well I went back to sleep. I woke up again at 7:30 AM and got dressed. My first morning having to feed myself and all I ate was some cereal bars, bread, and orange juice. I like to eat light in the morning anyway, so that was fine. I dressed up in my cargo khaki pants and bright orange Princeton sweatshirt. So I got dressed and then brushed my teeth and gelled up to look nice for today. It was supposed to be a very nice day today. Thank goodness, I don’t like dreary weather. Almost ready to go, all I need to do is check my bag for all my necessary items- laptop, charger, rain coat, flash, and food. My camera bag was always prepared- my initiation card, passport, camera, compact flash cards, extra mints, and lens cleaner.

Time to go!

I met Tim downstairs, today was his last day in Limerick. I went online to write a comment on Linda’s (SD) myspace page since she sent me a comment, emailed Eric, and wrote a post card for Giovanni.

I was done all my home stuff at the hostel. I left to go to the gas market to get a latte. After spending 1.30 Euros on a tall latte, I met Tim walking with his gear back to the train/bus station. I called out to him saying hi.

We walked all the way to the roundabout chatting. Once we got to the roundabout, I gave him my Princeton email address to stay in touch.

We said our byes and I continued on to the King’s castle. First I checked to see if Dunne’s was open, but it opens at 11 AM on Mondays. Most stores are closed today because of the national bank holiday. Uh oh … I am going to be hard pressed looking for CD-Rs or an external hard drive.

Well all I can do now is just walk towards the castle. As always my camera was out snapping pictures. It was a gorgeous day out today. Sun was bright and there was blue all over the sky. But with Ireland’s tricky weather, I sure pray to god that it remains this way. I walked down to city hall, which is about forty minutes away from the hostel. I saw another cathedral and walked inside.

Having finished looking at the cathedral, I went back out to the castle to wait for it to open. It was supposed to open at 9:30 AM. And so I wait. While I waited I took out the laptop to work on the diary to fix the dates and start to put in today’s entry.

They finally opened the doors and I was the first one through the door, well other than the employees. With a grin on my face, I gave them my PU card to get a discount, and toured around the King’s Castle. I stayed there for a good hour and a half exploring through the ruins. I really like Europe. I walked to the towers to get a good over look of Limerick and as always snapped a lot of pictures. It was so fascinating! The view was just terrific! But hunger called. And I went back to the picnic tables to eat my two apples. It only took me three minutes to consume my apples. Mmm food. I looked at my map and went to the last spot, the dig spot. Just like to get to the towers, I had to crouch to get through these small doorways. I can’t help that I am tall. Looking at all the excavation sites, I looked at all the dirt. Blinking my eyes, I decided that it was time to go.

The exit was nicely put to bring you straight to the souvenir shop. How nice. I looked around and thought that Ann’s dad needed a new hat so I bought a hat, a necklace, and three post cards.

Sixteen Euros for the entire purchase, in dollars I think that is about $20. To drown my sorrows I went to the bathroom to go take a piss.

Leaving the castle I meandered to the lemon shop, to get a vegetarian sandwich. Ugh … I think that sandwich had mayo in it. Well I ate it and left. I am never going to go back there. Sheesh.

After the rain stopped, I went around to look for the external hard drive. Going into a small shopping mall, I looked around to see if I could buy one. Nope. Today was the national bank day where all small stores were closed. Instead I went to the bathroom inside. I had to pay 20 cents to get in! What?! Again?? It is odd that I would have to pay, since the bathroom isn’t as clean as a public restroom and there was no person to hand you towels! Then I paid 1.50 Euros to go online to email mom and check my mail. Frustrated that I had to pay for that as well, I left for HMV. HMV told me to go to Maplin’s. But the store was forty minutes away walking. Shifting my eyes a little, I decided to take a taxi there. But first I had to call my parents.

Mom and dad were wondering how I was eating and what I have seen. So I gave them the ten four on the information. They are glad that I am doing well and, likewise, I am glad they are doing well. My mom’s leg is feeling better, thank you master. I was devastatingly worried about my mom’s leg, especially with me gone. But it’s getting better so all is good. Especially now that she is going to Vietnam, I am glad that her leg is getting better. It would have been very difficult for her to get around with a bad leg.

Happy knowing that my mom and dad are doing well, I called a taxi near by to take me to Maplin. When I arrived there I was scared about how I was going to walk back to the main area and not get lost, but I paid the driver six Euros and went inside the store. I found my external hard drive for 96 Euros, about $119. It was a necessary buy. No matter how much I debated the issue mentally, buying it was the only option I had. So I did and left to walk back to the King’s castle which was my reference point.

On the way back I stopped to ask where University of Limerick was and was told that it was in the opposite direction of where I was walking. Great. Tomorrow I must head down that way to see it. So I continued to trudge my way back through the sunshine, then rain storm, then sunshine, then rainstorm, in that order, to find a Starbucks or a coffee shop.

I walked and walked, I took a rest at the Hunt’s museum to ask for the bathroom and to find where I could get hand knit sweaters. I have to look for Irish’s handcraft shops tomorrow since they are closed. Taking off my poncho, I went back to trek to find my beloved coffee stop. Walking in a huge circle, I found the coffee shop, not Starbucks sadly, but Carlton Coffee where I stopped to get a mocha.

The drink costed me three Euros. Well … it was ok, certainly not the best, but I needed my caffeine and a rest from the walking. So I took out my new external hard drive and laptop to start transferring images and work on this journal. As I typed in this journal the weather changed to sunny out again. Ireland has some really strange weather. But it is probably strange to me because it is never that erratic in New Jersey.

As a side note, I realized that I do not tip places that often, unless it is a place that I come to often. So I wonder if those one time only shops are upset that I do not tip them.

My plan for tonight is to stay up late till when night comes so I can get some night shots. However, I am afraid because of my location that I might be mugged. Courtbrack Accommodations is really in the outskirts of the city. It takes me about twenty minutes to get to the beginning of the city walking. It’s by the industrial park, which is the lower socioeconomic regions and typically that is where crime is higher. Since I carry a laptop and my camera everywhere, I am a good target, luckily people do not suspect me until I bring out my camera. I would leave the stuff in my room, other than my camera, but likewise, how am I supposed to know the attendees there won’t use the key to access my room? It’s a tiger in the front and wolves in the back.

Well I had to walk back to the hostel, like usual, this time I had to take a crap real bad. Good thing I was able to hold it in as I trudged through the rain to find relief. It was excruciating! I was didn’t take a dump since 7 AM. And it was about 4 PM when I relieved myself. That’s a long time in between dumps!

When I finally let myself go, I went back to my room to lighten my bag load. Took out all the gifts I bought, electrical cords, and papers. And bingo my bag was lightened! While I did all that, I took a break too. I started transferring files to the new portable hard drive. Thank goodness that I have that drive. I can take more pictures without worrying. But it is only 80 gigabytes so that is my cap.

My mind went towards what I needed to get other than food.

  • Umbrella
  • Watch
  • Another sweatshirt

Things that I needed to do before I leave Limerick:

  • See the Cliffs of Moher
  • Buy my mom a hand knit sweater

Thinking of that list, I realized that I do not know my mother’s size. Nice going, Ted. Well I guess I will have to call mom to ask before tomorrow.

Prepared to go back out, I took a piss and dropped off the key to the counter, god that girl is hot. Anyway, back I went to find Apache pizza parlor to get some dinner. The guys there are really nice and helpful. Heck most of the people I have met in Ireland were nice and helpful. I started off throwing my rain coat back over myself and the camera and got a cappuccino. There was a cute Irish chick at the service station so I had to go and look. Smiling and made eye contact I bought my drink and headed off to the pizza store.

I have to say that I am a good hiker, cause this was another 25 minute walk. I saw Dunnes first, so I went there to get an umbrella before heading towards the pizza parlor. I bought a small hand held umbrella for six Euros. I think I will need to exchange some money later. I will just need to find a place, maybe the tourist building.

I set myself down after I ordered a 9” pizza with olives and mushrooms and started the transfer process again. While I waited for the pizza and transfers to be finished I started to type in the journal again. The guy who showed me where Dunnes was, asked me if I found what I was looking for. I told him that I went to Morbis to get the external and thanked him for help. Goes to show that nothing beats being nice, at the least you will get niceness in return. And that is always a good thing.

By the time I finished my pizza the transfers were done and I was still typing in the journal. I think I am going to go call my mom in a little while to find out her shirt size. The hand knit sweater is going to be expensive. But at least I have my CCs. I just need the bills for small stuff like bus rides and food. But it is 12:40 in the afternoon at home, so she will probably not be there. So I will have to hang out in the city much longer to call her. That crappy hostel’s phone is broken.

It’s still raining out.

Now I am just being idle, I want to go back out to take more pictures but it is still pouring out. Stupid rain! By the time I get tired and back in my hostel room, I bet the rain is going to clear up. Well Ireland is a rainy country. And it has been raining for 3 months straight before I came here, so I should be thankful that I had days of clear skies.

I went back to the mini mall and found the hand crafts store. I will have to stop by there before I leave Limerick on the 8th. I just hope they open before 10 AM. That way I will have enough time to go there, buy it, go back to my hostel, pack up, and head towards the train station to go to Cork. My train leaves at noon, so I want to get to the station at 11.

I called my mom after I went food shopping. I bought apples, three bags of trail mix, some cereal bars, and a bottle of juice. Oh we have to buy our own plastic bags too. And those bags are so cheap. One thing I hate about my mom’s library is that they never know where to transfer. My time is precious because I am using an international phone card and my minutes on that card is depleting. I was finally transferred to mom and I asked her what size she wore. She asked for a medium or large size sweater that was off white. Now that that was out of the way, I headed back to my hostel to drop my load off.

I really hate this trek back.

I finally got back and went to my room. Deciding to go see the Cliffs of Moher, I used my last amount of change to use the internet. I was not sure what to do, so I went back out to the bus station, where I arrived from, to ask. On my way there I spotted the park to come back to for more picture taking. So I went into the station only to find out that the bus information office was closed. Crap. So I asked the security guard what time that they will open tomorrow and he replied “6:30” AM. Ok I really need to wake up early tomorrow.

I left the station, it was still drizzling out. Taking out my expensive umbrella I walked back to the park to take pictures. They had this really bright red monument that I had to take a picture of. I walked around the park, looking and shooting pictures, this time with the umbrella in my pocket. Getting my fill of the area I left for the clock tower and the cross monument to take pictures of those. Happy that it was near night, I went to the nearest phone to call Eric. I told him my progress and everything. Vincent was in the background and it sounded like he was having fun. I told them that I couldn’t go to the authentic Irish vegetarian restaurant here since I wouldn’t have time and that it was near the University of Limerick, which was far away. Too far for me to hike to and back, I was sad that I couldn’t try it. Maybe they will have one in Cork.

Leaving the phone booth I hiked all the way down to the roundabout and realized that I dropped my umbrella somewhere. Shocked, disappointed, and saddened I went back to look for it. I went back to the clock tower and the cross and it was not there. I was about to go back to park to look there, but the gates were closed. Crap. That was 6 Euros.

Disappointed in my carelessness I trekked back to the hostel. When I got back I grabbed some clothes and took a shower. The hot water doesn’t work so the entire time I have been showering with cold water.

I meditated and went straight to bed. My legs were beat, while anticipating the next day.