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pug_yup Mar 7th, 2007 06:05 AM

Pug Does the Emerald Isle - Conclusion
The end has come to Pug's May 2006 trip to Ireland.

DAY 10:

Pug's last day in Ireland. I bet the Irish were glad I was flying back to the U.S. as they could then get back to some decent spring weather.

NOTE TO SELF: Someone needs to hire me to travel to places that have droughts, as the Rain God is my shadow.

Now many people may say "Pug, you are overacting about the rain, it rains in Ireland, so what?"

Yes, I would be overacting if May 2006 was a normal rainy spring month in Ireland. But alas... the breakfast table on our last day, I perused the Dublin paper and saw an article with a headline that read "May 2006 wettest on record since 1941."

Ya think?

See, I'm not least when it comes to knowing the rain and wind we encountered in Ireland on our 10 day trip was abnormal even by Irish standards. In fact it RAINED 8/10 days we were in Ireland. Not drizzling, not showering, not sputtering on and off --- it RAINED!

Anyway, our last day was overcast with no rain (the Rain God was busy packing up to go to the states with me). Me, my sis, my brother and brother-in-law packed up our belongings, checked out of the Schoolhouse
Hotel and grabbed the Air Coach bus in front of the hotel at 1:20 pm. We arrived at the airport by 2:20 pm.

Let me just say, while I was on the bus, I was flabbergasted on how Dublin drivers find a way to squeeze a car into a space one would think even a bicycle would not fit. I was literally shaking my head in amazement at the millimeter space between the bus and the other vehicles traveling alongside of it.

No wonder our old friend, the blue Ford, had a precariously hanging driver's side mirror.

Once at the airport we ended up standing in the wrong Aer Lingus line for check-in and once we figured *that* out we turned to go to the correct line and wham! the security guard pulled out my brother-in-law for a surprise security check.

Oh yeah, we should all be playing craps in Las Vegas -- we are *that* lucky.

However, the security check was somewhat painless and we eventually checked in to Aer Lingus and we were on our way back home to the states.

This time the plane leaving Dublin for JFK was an hour late. It arrived in NYC an hour behind schedule which was OK as our Jet Blue flight back to Syracuse was also delayed. But eventually we made it home, safe and sound, fondly remembering our 10 day wet Irish adventure (with photos to prove it).


-- If you can afford to stay for a month or more in Ireland, I would recommend that route -- as you are then guaranteed some good weather to see Ireland's beautiful scenery and cities.

-- Airline travel is still a PITA because of the security -- wear slip on shoes because you will need to take off your shoes at the screening gate. Plus you will need to take off all jackets, remove your keys/change from your pockets, and remove toilet items from your bags. Basically if they tell you to strip, you strip.

-- Computer check-ins at airports still have not had all the bugs worked out.

-- The weather in Ireland in May is usually not as rainy as it was for our trip -- but expect some type of rain almost everyday and cold temperatures (upper 40's low 50's). Maybe that is why most people travel to Ireland in the summer, hmmmm...

-- If you plan to travel to Ireland in May bring two jackets (one a rain jacket), rain boots, rain pants, gloves and a hat -- or you will get soaking wet -- guaranteed.

-- We had no bad accommodations in Ireland, all B&B's were clean and comfortable.

-- Best roads: Tipperary area

-- Worst roads: Connemara area

-- Worst traffic: Dublin (of course)

-- Get a small beat up rental car, as you will get dings and scratches on the car driving Ireland's narrow roads.

-- Pug's favorite area of Ireland: Dublin (for the museums)

-- Pug's least favorite area of Ireland: Connemara region (too rainy, too many tourists)

-- Pug highly recommends: The Schoolhouse Hotel in Dublin -- quiet, very large rooms, nice breakfast, convenient to Air Coach bus.


Not too bad, I suppose it could have been worse. Now if I can just keep the Rain God at home for my Paris trip coming up in two weeks, I will be one happy camper.

Wait...maybe I should be more concerned about the Snow God -- I can just see an early spring Noreaster making its way up the New England coast grounding all flights out of JFK on March 22nd, 2006.

Nahh...but I'll make sure to pack my mittens, hat, gloves and snow boots just the same.

Lydio Mar 7th, 2007 06:08 AM

Such a whiney trip report.

It rains - so what. You should try to have fun - even in bad weather. Does it never rain in Syracuse?

pug_yup Mar 7th, 2007 06:12 AM

You're so funny. ;-)

Gotta love people.

janisj Mar 7th, 2007 06:15 AM

Ya know - your story is a fun read but I'm giving up on it -- why being so stubborn about sticking eveything on the same thread? Itallian_Chauffer tried to fix it for you but you just shined him of . . . . .

pug_yup Mar 7th, 2007 06:28 AM

I guess I don't see what the big deal is about typing my author name "pug_yup" in the search box and clicking the search button.

Anyway, you don't have to read the posts, it is not a required homework assignment. :-)

Jeez, it's just a travel board, there are much more serious things to worry about in this world than Pug messing up on posting her sad Irish travel stories.

As everyone likes to tell me, people should learn to lighten up and laugh more. ;-)

janisj Mar 7th, 2007 06:59 AM

Since your trip report's <b>seven</b> threads are your first and only posts on Fodors, I guess I don't understand why you so resisted the polite advice you were given from the get go. We were just trying to help you use the forum more effectively.

Itallian_Chauffer Mar 7th, 2007 07:33 AM

The rest of PUG's reports can be found here:;tid=34958719

I liked your report. It was entertaining and informative, which in a nutshell is all we can ask.

I also don't believe that you were being whiney -- I think THAT would have sounded more like: &quot;What a rip-off, lousey place ...&quot;

It's GOOD to have a sense of humor when traveling. As I always say, 'NO battle plan EVER survives first contact with the enemy.&quot;

Hope you don't mind my &quot;fixes&quot;.


12perfectdays Mar 7th, 2007 03:57 PM

Thanks Pug-
It was fun!

stillriver Mar 7th, 2007 04:38 PM

Loved your trip report Pug! Thank yyou for sharing with us. I hope I will not get the rain you had on my May trip this year!

Pegontheroad Mar 7th, 2007 05:39 PM

Pug, you're making me very nervous. We're spending 2 1/2 weeks in Ireland in September. I hope it's dried out by then.

bluesmusic Mar 7th, 2007 05:39 PM

Thanks, Pug. We're going to Ireland in late April. Thanks, especially for the advice on the ATM Pin numbers.

Songdoc Mar 8th, 2007 02:32 PM

Pug, thanks for taking the time and effort to write such an engaging report. You're quite a writer! I wish you'd had better weather and enjoyed your trip more.

I've been incredibly lucky with the weather, finding a disproportionate number of bright sunny days during my last two Ireland trips (Feb. 06 and Feb. 07 -- you can look up &quot;Songdoc's trip reports).

But I have to admit, it wouldn't have been nearly as wonderful if I had encountered the dreadful weather you had -- especially slipping and sliding on those roads. I did hit some snow, but it was magical and made for some exquisite views and pix.

It's one thing to say, &quot;Just have a positive attitude and enjoy your trip anyway.&quot; But to me, Ireland is a place where one goes primarily for the scenery and the natural beauty. If it were a different kind of a trip, you could spend time in museums or theater. So, while we can only make the best of things, I really do empathize with your disappointment over the weather.

I wish you enjoyed your trip as much as I enjoyed your trip report :-)

Itallian_Chauffer Mar 8th, 2007 05:20 PM

Particularly for bluesmusic:

In reference to the ATM PIN number...

A few years ago, after I told a teller at my Credit Union that we were traveling to Ireland, said that, in addition to pre-notifying your financial institutions (banks AND credit cards), it was important to know that MANY ATMs in foreign countries would not accept your PIN number unless it was the original PIN issued WITH the card.
In other words, if you had the PIN changed to a number of your chosing in order to more easily remember, the ATM might not accept the new one as it wouldn't match the number ENCODED on the magnetic stip. The teller speculated that the ATM used the 'cross-reference' in lieu of incurring the cost/ time expense that contacting a US database would involve.
Dunno how true that all is, but...
Last April, my wife and I were in Ireland. She has changed HER PIN, but I have not, and only MY card would work in the ATMs....


CAPH52 Mar 8th, 2007 10:01 PM

Very entertaining report, pug!

So do I have you and your shadowing rain god to blame for the fact that it rained so much the three years we lived in Syracuse? :D

And please, please do leave that creature behind when you go to Paris as we'll be going at about the same time!;)

12perfectdays Mar 8th, 2007 10:32 PM


How funny- it's like a Syracuse reunion thread. BTW, in SYR-better the rain then the mosquitos when it stopped!

Yanno what I miss though?
The State Fair (and no one in L.A. believes me when I tell them about the 1,000lb butter sculpture in the dairy building)


CAPH52 Mar 8th, 2007 10:41 PM

We always enjoyed the state fair too, Dawn! Do you remember the baked bean sandwiches?! (We lived there from '76 to '79) Not that they were the food highlight of the fair!;)

Chris_Monica Mar 9th, 2007 12:43 PM

My husband and I loved your honest and witty report. I think some peole need to get a sense of humor! Whatever...I have been thoroughly entertained and amused.
Paris will be beautiful. Have a lovely trip. We look forward to reading about your new adeventures!

mahlquist Mar 10th, 2007 05:47 AM

I enjoyed your account of your trip, and since my mom was born and raised in Syracuse I feel a spiritual connection to the 2 threads :-) The Rain God found me in Skibbereen in July of 1999, while we were exploring the Famine Cemetery. I thought we were going to sink right down among the remains of the departed. So, no, you aren't OVER-REACTING at all :-)

pug_yup Mar 10th, 2007 03:42 PM

Thanks to everyone for your nice comments and to Itallian Chauffer for fixing my &quot;messy&quot; saga of woe.

I debated posting my Ireland trip report (that is why it is so late, and also because I was too lazy to finish writing it).

I thought to myself -- Should I?

Shouldn't I?

I know many people are put off by trip reports that are not gloriously happy and upbeat -- but I figured, eh... I'll take a chance... in hindsight the trip was kind of funny, and perhaps others may get a kick out of it.

I really do have some fond memories of that trip, namely that crazy Aussie who decided to take on Croagh Patrick -- come hell or high water! I still think about him and wonder if he ever made it to the top and back down again. [sniffle] I wonder where he is now?

Anyway, back to the real issue at hand.

That butter sculpture at the NYS Fair.

Yes, ex-Syracusans, every year we wait in awe for the unveiling of the 600+ pound butter sculpture at the NYS Fair. It is a glorious thing to behold -- especially if you are really, really, really into butter.

The 2006 sculpture named &quot;Healthy Goals&quot; showed a mother and her two children drinking milk (it is *always* about milk, what is up with that? ;-) ) Unfortunately (fortunately?) the mom was showing a bit too much of her backside (if you know what I mean) and her HOT PANTS were all the rage.

Gotta love Syracuse.

Speaking of food highlights in Syracuse:

Salt Potatoes rank as number one in weird food oddities for non native CNYers. I lived in Oregon and Arizona, and whenever I mentioned salt potatoes people looked at me like I had two heads.

Salt and Potatoes? Why would anyone want to eat that?

BUT I do admit, Syracuse does have the BEST ice cream in the nation. Gannon's Homemade Ice Cream is to die for in my opinion, and I have never come across better ice cream anywhere in the U.S.

BTW, I just wanted to say that you know you have met a native Syracusan when he/she obsesses about the &quot;weather.&quot; Self deprecation, sarcasm and humor is a requirement here in the gloomy Northeast. If we can't laugh at the absurdity of life in snowy Syracuse (winner of the Golden Snowball three years running, hooray!), take my word on it -- we would cry.

Anyway, in two weeks I hope to be in Paris if I can just stop the Snow God from planting that early spring Noreaster smack dab on top of JFK on March 22.

Can't guarantee that the Rain God won't be tagging along with me should I ever make it to Paris. ;-)

12perfectdays Mar 10th, 2007 05:11 PM

Never did do the baked bean sandwiches, too busy waiting in line for my milk in the dairy building and the free baked potato in the horticulture building!

Pizza Frete (sp?) and salted potatoes...oh- and hanging by the beer stalls waitin' for dad to go see the smash it up car derby...ohhh- and the free concerts at Miller Court!

I remember in '86/'87 one of the free concerts at the fountain had a group of college guys that sang really great a capella and have since turned out to be Rocapella.

How funny about the salted potatoes (and how true)! I was catching DH up about this thread and started moaning about missing salted potatoes (and a clam boat sandwich at Friendly's)!

As for your report- you can be sure I will be checking back to find out the fun had in Paris as this one was so entertaining!

For the people who just don't &quot;get it&quot;- Syracuse is a major Italian and Irish community and even if you are not of either descent or a &quot;transplant&quot; of elswhere living in Syr- you can't help but absorb and make your own the gift of a sarcastic wit, an ascerbic tongue and a flair for the dramatic...the snow, rain and humidity cause it to seep right into the pores!

Safe journey!

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