Saturday, June 25, 2011

Day 17

We got a chance to see more of London today. We went to the London school of economics to hear a former member of Parliament speak. He was very knowledgeable and interesting. After that, we went for a medieval banquet for lunch. Post lunch we made our way to the tower of London and got a chance to see the crown jewels and other royal emblems. The jewels were pretty amazing. Then we took a boat ride on the river Thames.
We ate at Ye olde cock tavern, where we had rewarmed hamburgers that weren't that great. We are then heading to the theater to see love never dies. I can't lie I'm sort of tired, I hope I can stay up through it. And stay up I did! That play was awesome! Love never dies was a down right marvelous way to end this trip.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day 16

Headed to foggy London town today. She be a fun day. We get to see the changing of the guards, the tower of London, the London eye and whatever else London can throw at us.
We stopped at Harrod's to have a look around and that place is ridiculous! Nuff said.
We spent the day walking around London and our tour guide was a piece of work. A quite quaint old lady, but was very all over the place. She made for a great tour.
It was a long day. We had an interesting time with a couple of delegates who took some extra time shopping, but we handled the situation. All and all it was a long day.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day 15

We're off to Warwick castle today. We get to see yet another medieval castle but today we get to have a medieval feast in the castle for dinner. Should be fun!
After a short trip from Wales to England we arrived in Chester to shop a little and eat lunch. Chester is a cool little town. I could live here.  Now on our way to the castle.

Warwick castle was fun and now we're back at the hotel yo get some rest before an early departure for London in the morning.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Day 14

<p>We had a full on day today in Wales. We did some board breaking and castle repelling and good times were had. Needless to say.....I rocked the repelling. I could probably be an instructor. Moving on......we finished the full on stuff and made our way back to the hotel to chill for the night. <br>
Now I'm really feeling like eating a steak or some Lamb chops (fact : there is a 4:1 sheep to person ratio in Wales) , they can spare a Lamb or two :). Now I'm hungry. We're heading back to the hotel. I hope dinner is good.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Day 13

We're leaving our home stay families today en route to Wales. After a 2 hour ferry ride, we'll arrive in Wales on the way to the hotel. Laundry needs to be done TODAY! I'm just about out of pants. Hopefully that can be done at the hotel. Irish vocabulary : fresh red - a light that just turned red therefore able to be run. Lol!
We made it to Wales. We'll be repelling down a castle wall tomorrow. Should be fun.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Day 12 - Dublin

Our first night at the hone stay was amazing. We had great food and even better conversation. Today was went to the Dublin town center and got a chance to see Trinity college, Temple bar area, and a host of other sights that Dublin had to offer. The kids got some free time to shop and see the sights and we got a chance to go off on our own in town. I had a great tike today. We came back to our home stay and we had shepherd's pie and ice cream and tea. It was a good day.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day 11

Today we left end route to Dublin. We stopped at a restaurant in Kildaire for lunch and we had the beat waitress ever a little red haired elderly lady named Mary. She was very grandmotherly. After that we headed to another glacial park in Glendalough. It was an old church settlement in the valley founded by St. Kevin.  After leaving the park we continued on to Dublin to meet our home stay families.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Day 10

Leaving Limmerick and now on the way to the gap of Dunloe in Killarney for a horse and buggy ride and a float on a boat.
The horse carriage ride and the boat ride through the gap of Dunloe was absolutely gorgeous. Aside from the rain showers its a beautiful glacial valley with lush green scenery and numerous lakes. The granite peaks out of the green mountain side to give a glimpse of the pass' volcanic history. I'll post some pics soon.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Day 9

The first half of our day was spent traveling. We switched coaches about half way and then had lunch and we ate at Flanagan's in Kildaire. After that we made our way to another castle (Bunratty). We received a nice tour through the castle it's very old and surrounded by two rivers and the ocean. One of the smaller castles we've been to. Then to our hotel. We have some nice accommodations for the night. Folks seem to be pleased.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day 8

Today we went to Coleraine Academic Institution. It's an all boys school in Coleraine, Ireland. It is a facility over 150 years old and a fine academic institution. We got a chance to meet some of the students and take a tour of the school. The girls loved it since it was an all boy school. The guys enjoyed talking to the guys at the school also. The vice principal was a nice guy and very knowledgeable. Now we're on the way to the causeway and the rope bridge. We also brought the sunshine with us so let's hope the day continues like this.

We've made it to the Giant's Causeway (built by Finn McCool)  and we're going to walk along the coast to an old rope bridge across some of Ireland's most beautiful scenery. The kids are in high gear right now and it's good to see them enjoying themselves. I would consider this day a home run.

We made it to and from the rope bridge. Today we definitely got our workouts in. We walked up and down a cliff face and to the end of Ireland. On the way now to the hotel to eat and then get ready for a lesson tonight about the Irish conflict. Oh oh oh....our new bus driver's name is Shamus and he looks like a wee leprechaun :).  Cheers!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 7

We said goodbye to Gordie (pronounced Jordie), our coach driver, and now we're on the way to Belfast in Northern Ireland. The ferry (just like a cruise) had some great food and one of the few places we've been with free wifi. That's been nice to be able to post a few messages, read an email or two and put up a couple of pics. I think I'm going to find a place to nestle in and take a nap. I'll let you know how the rest of the day goes. Cheers, for now. 
After our tour of Belfast we made it to our hotel for tthe night. A lovely holiday inn right outside of the city. The kids are excited and I think the other leaders are too. Belfast has a rich history. They've seen everything from civil war to the invention of the AC. Awesome place. Cheery-o for now.

Day 6

Today we spent the day in Edinburgh. It was a nice town. Very old and historic. We spent some time at the Edinburgh castle and on the Royal mile. We ended the day at another hostel. This one was much nicer than the last. It had private bathrooms and sinks in the room. Tomorrow we head out to Ireland and our coach driver warned us not to wear orange or green because of the potential of bodily harm in the torn town of Belfast. Like some real bloods and crips type stuff. Tomorrow should be interesting.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Day 5

We started the day off at a sheep farm. We got to help sheer the sheep and we also got a chance to talk to the farmer about how he trains his dogs, the state of agriculture in Scotland and a host of other topics. He was impressed with the kids and the questions they had for him.
We then went to Loch Ness. It's a beautiful place. We didn't get to see nessie but got some good "insider info" about her. We got a chance to go out on a boat in the loch and took some really good pictures of the area. We finished the day off with some free time for the kids at the shopping center down the street from our hostel. It seemed to be a pretty good day.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Day 4

We went white water rafting and the water was freezing but it was a good time. The kids seemed to have enjoyed themselves. Now we're on the way to Blair castle for some Haggis and a tour!

The haggis wasn't bad. Look it up if you don't know what it is. We then spent some time at Blair castle. It would've been nice if we could've gone in but oh well. We took a nice tractor rode around the grounds and got a chance to see the lovely countryside. Now we're heading to our hostel and get ready to do some shopping for our next few meals. This should be interesting.

The hostel is very basic. I've seen worse so I'm not complaining. We'll be here for a couple of days and then on to the next locale. Tomorrow we go to a farm and sheer sheep and watch a sheep herder and his dog do their thing.

I've included a pic of Blair castle for your viewing pleasure. Time for some rest.

Day 3

We spent the day at St. Andrew's. We saw the ruins of the old cathedral, the university and of course the golf course. It was a beautiful course right on the water. After we left we went to the hotel and got a chance to talk to a real Highlander (there can be only one!). I got a chance to wear a kilt and weild some weapons. Good times.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Day 2

After the overnight flight, everyone was tired. We went to an abbey, an old jail, and got a chance to see the Irish countryside. It's ridiculously green over here but very rainy. Most of the time on the bus today, the kids slept. The jetlag was getting the best of just about everyone. Our hotel is right next to a beautiful loch nestled in between some mountains. It looks like something off of lord of the rings. That's all for now.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Day 1

I'm waiting in the Newark airport to board the plane. Seems like I have a good group of students. Seems like there are some very interesting personalities in our delegation.