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I woke up at 7 am to go to the reception desk to pick up my clean clothes to repack into my luggage and then immediately left the hostel to go straight to Blarney. I bought two boxes of nutra grain bars and a pack of pringles. Breakfast of champions!

When the bus arrived, I hopped right onto the bus to go see a fantastic 500 year old castle to kiss its stone. Yep! The bus ride took an hour to get there, so I caught up on some reading and note taking. When we finally arrived at Blarney Castle, I immediately got out and jogged to the entrance. You can tell I was pretty excited to go see the castle and kiss the stone! The clouds and sky, on the other hand, had other plans for this awesome day. Oh well. I have my poncho.

Using my handy Princeton University ID card I got in for half off! Sweet! This castle was really awesome to see! I got stuck plenty of times trying to get through the passageways because of them being so tight and cramped. I squirmed my way through the castle to the top to kiss the infamous stone.

The story behind the stone is this:

It is claimed that the synonymy of “Blarney” with “empty flattery” derives from a circumstance in which Queen Elizabeth I, while requesting an oath of loyalty to retain occupancy of land, received responses from Cormac Teige McCarthy, the Lord of Blarney, which amounted to subtle diplomacy, and promised loyalty to the Queen without “giving in”. Elizabeth proclaimed that McCarthy was giving her “(a lot of) Blarney”, thus apparently giving rise to the legend.

From Wikipedia

There are thousands of visitors who come to kiss that stone, I must have kissed a thousand people who kissed it prior to my kiss. eww.

When I left the stone, I went back down and bought my photo of me kissing the stone. I usually never buy these things, but this was definitely a once in a lifetime occurrence! I wanted to keep this forever!

I went towards the Rock Close to get lost. I wandered around the tree areas and saw a place called the Witch’s Cove and another place called the Druid’s Circle. Which in turn led me towards getting lost for hours on the Lake Walk.

I went around the Lake Walk and decided to head back before I get myself even more lost. On the way I met up with this elderly Texan couple whom I joined on my return. They asked me why I was going by myself and where is my girlfriend. I replied that I was single and this was my first time in Ireland. 🙂

When I got to the entrance, I looked for a grocery store to buy some food. It was going to be a little while for the bus to come and for the return trip, so might as well get some food. I bought a couple pieces of french bread, some cheese, yogurt, fruits, and nuts to eat.

When we got back to the city, I immediately went to the vegetarian restaurant to get some dinner. Oh man, this food was good! It is a pity, the citizens saw this as a way to lose weight. Oh well!

When I got back to the hostel to burn my photographs to CD-R there was this bunch of French people, with developmental disorders, booking to stay. One of them comes up and sits at my table and tries to strike up an odd conversation with me in French. Now I am not that fluent in French, but I do catch some words. I finished burning and smiled at the guy and left to shower and sleep.

Me kissing the stone!