I’ve been gone only three days now and it feels like I’ve been over here for weeks. As soon as we unloaded from the plane at 7:30AM the tour began. Although they knew we would all be tired and jetlagged we toured all over Ireland our first day. We stopped by the little town of Lahinch and proceeded to the Cliffs of Moher. They were simply breathtaking. Keith Knowlton, my roommate for the trip, and I hiked along them for a while with our professor Dr. Aeisi. He continually pulled us back from the edge and wouldn’t let us get within five feet of it. We would raise his blood pressure every few minutes by peering over the edge, but it’s going to be a long trip so we didn’t push him too much.
We stopped by a few other places throughout the day (see pictures) and whenever we got off the bus all forty-one of us would begin snapping photos. I felt like those foreigners you see in Atlanta moving around in a mob all taking photos of the exact same thing. That night we got settled in at our hotel in Galway and went out to a pub that night for dinner. We were able to finally find one that was full of other university students, and the band, of course, was playing all of last year’s American hits.
Thursday, we toured more historical sites in the area and our “lecture” for the day was given over the bus microphone while we drove. Everyone had finally caught up on sleep so we went to Club Cuba after dinner. Of course we were about an hour earlier than the normal crowd, but that was okay since we got in for free. The dance floor finally became packed and so some girls on the trip and I made a bet. If they asked some locals to dance I had to do the same. They quickly found some lonely guys standing on the edge of the dance floor and now the pressure was on for me. Courage finally swelled up inside of me and once I was dancing I asked the girl where she was from. Then in that dreadful accent we are all so familiar with she told me – Baawston, Massachusetts. My relatives raised me better than to entertain northern girls, so I quickly moved on looking for an Irish one.
Everyone is sore and barely moving after our trip to the Aran Islands today. The history there is so rich and it blows my mind how old all of the historical sites are. We traveled the island on cycles and about ten of us stuck together the whole time. We had lunch at the world’s smallest church, Church of Saint Benan (3.7m x 1.8m). It was established in the third century! Think about that, four hundred years after Jesus walked the earth the gospel had already reached a remote island on the coast of Ireland.
We continued on to Dun Aonghus, a Celtic stone fort built in 2000 BC. The photographs speak louder than anything I could type about this place.
Dr. Aeisi told us he thought we were the best group he had ever had (and he’s older than Coca-Cola) and I know these next few weeks touring around are going to hold many more adventures.