We spent Juhannus with Thierry, Eeva and her parents in their lovely cottage in Tammisaari / Ekenäs. Liisa took most of the nice pictures !
Ca y est, 2007 est dans le retroviseur, et 2008 commence sur les chapeaux de roues…
Merci a James & Kat d’avoir organisé une belle soirée pour feter le passage. Thanks James & Kat for organising the great party.
Quelques photos, tant attendues.
We’ve been invited by Knut and Olli to sail around Helsinki on Ila. Great evening, even though the wind wasn’t the best !
Knut, un collègue et ami, nous a invité a passer une soirée a bord de son voilier. Fin d’après midi fort agréable, malgré le peu de vent … On a du démarrer le moteur a plus d’une occasion !
We’ll spend a week (1.7 - 8.7) around Ireland with James and Maija.
Departure, with Finnair, the famous air company where you have to pay extra to get a smile - and even then - book in advance.
Everything fine except the half an hour delay.
We arrive at Dublin airport, get our luggage and proceed to the rental car retrieval. Well, what a customer experience. Worse than Finnair. After a short chat with Dave and Laura, we’re heading to Dublin suburb where the cars are parked.
We got a Hyundai Tucson, kind of big and of course the wheel is on the right. Yes, I’ll do the driving, and on the left side of the road. Scary….
After an hour of traffic jam, motorway and more peaceful road, we arrive at Aileen, James’ sister. She’s very cool, cooks well - a chicken curry that will make me sweat, but not too much - and lives in a cute little house. We’ll go for our first pint after dinner in the village - Kilcullen - and then to bed. Oh yeah, I guess Aileen had problem getting asleep because of James’ imitation of a tractor.
9 o’clock wake up, or almost. Breaky and on the road pretty swiftly. We’ll drive through the Curragh, seeing lots of sheeps, army trucks and green grass.
After some driving - some will call it scary - we arrived to Kilkenny, where we had good lunch next to the castle. We took funny pictures thanks to Aileen’s ideas and had a walk in the city.
She went back home and we continued towards Cork, where we arrived before 6pm.
We checked in the Gresham Metropol, had a swim and a sauna. Went for a pint, dinner and a few more drinks in the city. Then spent some time writing and to bed. Tomorrow we’ll try to wake up at 8ish
We woke up at 8 a.m. in Cork and had breakfast at the hotel. The weather was really nice. Direction towards south-west. First stop in Rosscarbery to check out some swans and a local grave yard. Through Skibbereen and Schull we continued to Goleen (where Seb tried out a nice old tractor) and then to Mizen Head, which is the most southern-west point of Ireland. On the way we were stopped twice by policemen who were looking for drug dealers. Apparently we didn’t really fit the profile they were looking for, because they let us continue without any further inquieries. The Mizen Head was really great with some superb views. Maija and James were quite afraid on the bridge, but everyone managed to get over it. The wind at the end of the peninsula was very impressive!
From the Mizen Head we continued towards Bantry, which has been the centre of attention due to the drugs. In fact the dealers the police had arrested were kept in Bantry. Lots of tv cameras were there as well and the old lady of the B&B was so proud of how colourful her town looked on tv! The B&B was ok, eventhough James might not agree, nor Maija since the showers didn’t work at all. We added some air in the car’s tyres since one of them seemed to be practically empty… After a short stroll in town and two beers we started looking for a place to have dinner. Unfortunately the restaurants were very full, but finally we found a nice one where we could have fish and scallops. Some beers still after going to sleep.
Breakfast at grandma’s before starting the day’s journey. We went through Glengarriff and Kenmare to start the Ring of Kerry. The first part of the Ring between Kenmare and Killarney was really impressive with great scenery in the mountains. We stopped at the Torc waterfall to see the 18 m waterfall and to climb up quite a steep hill. The others were struggling to get up, but James was jumping up like a Duracell bunny. After Killarney we continued to Killorglin where we had lunch.
Next stop in Glenbeigh on its 6 km long sandy beach. James wanted to have a swim, but the others didn’t think it would be the best thing to do with cold weather and stormy wind… After a short drive the boys saw an old bridge and just had to climb on it. Apparently the view from up there was quite good. Some nice scenery on the way to Kells where Liisa and Seb wanted to do a nature trail, but it turned out to be a short walk to old people. Since it was already getting late and we didn’t have any accomodation booked, we drove directly to Waterville. The small town was really nice and colourful, eventhough Maija thought it was a bit spooky with no one on the streets and no phone connection. The first B&B was full, but the next one was actually completely empty and looked nice, so we decided to stay there. After showers (these ones actually worked quite ok!) we started looking for a place to eat. The nicest restaurant was full at the moment we got there, but we booked a table for a bit later and in the meantime had a beer in a close by bar. When getting to the restaurant James got lots of attention from the waiter due to his town of origin (’you know, almost everybody there are prisoners’). As starters we took mussels and oysters, main courses varied from steak to seabass and somehow we still managed to fit the dessert in the stomachs: Irish and Bailey’s coffee. The evening still continued in the Lobster bar with some drinks and music performances before going to sleep at the auntie’s.
Vendredi 20 Juillet : toutes les photos sont en ligne !
We spent a long weekend in Hiiumaa, Estonia to celebrate Juhannus. Good friends, lots of saslik (meat on barbecue), and a few trips in the countryside, looking for lighthouses, or defense buildings from WWII.
All in all, everybody was happy. Singles got their shot of madness, couples nice walks by the beach and everyone enjoyed the company of each other.
To end the trip, we went back to Paldisky. The place changed a lot since we visited last 4 years ago with Jo and Alex.
Today - the very same day Helsinki hosts Eurovision 2007 - a couple of friends were running the Helsinki City Run semi marathon.
You’ll find all the pictures I took there, just contact me if you want a full resolution copy for free. Any kind donation will go to my rugby club ( Helsinki Rugby Club ).
To contact me, just use the email address found at the bottom of each picture.