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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Old friends in Ennis


When we woke up on Wednesday morning, Gareth was curled around me and I breathed a sigh of relief. I immediately remembered the silly argument but hoped he had forgotten it. No sooner had this passed through my head when he mumbled "You shouted at me last night,"....I felt like I'd been punched in the stomach! He had remembered!! Instead of saying "Sorry," like I meant, I actually said "You were being an idiot,". Wow, sometimes I confound myself.

Anyway, we were both in a forgiving mood so it blew over. I attempted another full Irish breakfast; they were definitely begin to show on the hips by now, and we got ourselves organized for the next leg of the journey. On the Limerick road, we got a glimpse of some sun through the clouds and by the time we reached Ennis it was positively beaming - this definitely cheered the spirits although we didn't think we'd have energy enough to do the Ailwee caves or the cliffs of Moher that day.
We checked into our hostel - http://www.rowantreehostel.ie/ and we were really pleasantly surprised. The room was spacious, ensuite and as we'd requested, a private double room. The hostel was large and modern, situated right in the centre of Ennis alongside the river, with great facilities and staff. We went out to meet some friends, Mal & Tony, who used to live in Dubai but now reside in Maidstone. They have a fabulous set of children - Maddie, Rylee and Cayden. Unfortunately Cayden was at home with his granny, but we had some fun with the girls for an hour and a bite to eat. Gareth seemed to be suffering so we thought we'd have a little snooze and a walk around before meeting up with Mal and Tony later for a night out.

We went to the Dining Room restaurant in Market Place, and again got a great early bird deal - this seems to be the norm as a recession-buster in Ireland. I don't normally order chicken as a main course when out dining but the Grilled Supreme of Chicken with potato & zucchini Rosti, wild Mushrooms & pancetta was a delight to the palette after some lovely Doolin crab cakes all washed down with a Pinot Grigio Mal and I shared. I love a good catch-up with old friends and Gareth was subjected to quite a few stories from the days before Mal's brood arrived. Many ladies nights' on the tramp's trail in Dubai (stories for another time!) and even on night's in Mal and I could get upto mischief. We left the Dining Room to find some live music and headed to Dan O'Connell's. Honestly I can't remember much of the music but there was a nice man behind the bar who charged my phone for me! We then headed to Knox's; an old haunt and Mal's former workplace. Of course it was Jager-bomb time, and we had some fun lining up the shots and knocking them into the glasses - without any incidents!
Well, no incidents until Gareth stole one of Mal's jagers! He was so shocked by her expression; it was brilliant. I did tell him not to. However my own behavior wasn't exemplary - I managed to fall asleep in the toilet. This isn't like me, but to be fair - I had done a lot of driving and drinking over the previous days. Not drink-driving - but none the less. So I fell asleep in the bathroom, when I woke up I was in the dark. Initially I thought I was just sleeping weirdly, until I moved and the light came on. Then I realized I was sat upright in a toilet; something wrong with the picture. I'm surprised I didn't get more abuse for this but the jager-thief was still getting grief. They were nice enough to give us an extra drink, rather than kicking us out at closing but I knew that we had to get on the road early again next day so rather than accept Mal & Tony's invite to come back for more drinks (they had a child-free night) I did almost have to drag Gareth home though. Once again it was a slightly hungover awakening, and back on the road.

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