09.08.2015 - 10.08.2015
Sunday was our final day of riding to Cork to stay with Conor at his parents' house in Military Road, a fine example of 1870's architecture perched high atop a hill looking down into Cork city. We left Jack O'Rourke's about 10ish and, in fair weather, motored south along "bog roads" so described by Angela our host.
These roads were certainly not tourist roads but they were perfectly designed for the type of riding we wanted to do. Quiet, small, local sealed roads that went through some iconic Irish farming country and gave us an up close and personal look at the way the small communities of this country live.
We rode through wooded dells, along narrow tracks with hedges that abutted the tarmac and over ridges with rolling pastures either side. The variety of green on show was beautiful and I can only imagine how the vistas in this country comes alive in autumn as the leaves change colour.
As breakfast was not part of the deal with our room we needed to travel as far as Kanturk, about 50kms away, to find a place that was open and serving food. Late breakfast consumed we continued to travel the magical bog roads, past castles and stone walls hiding who knows what until finally, and a little reluctantly, we once again joined the rat race on the freeway into the city of Cork.
We arrived, with the weather still not raining, at the house and were greeted by Conor and his parents Gerry and Geraldine. A hot bowl of soup and a cuppa went down well for a late lunch.
Again Jim tended to the bikes and I ran a load of clothes through wash, this time FOC. A bit of oil, tightening of the head bolts on the scout and a clean of the contacts in the distributors (so much rain!) and both bikes were ship shape. We had a lazy rest of the afternoon until Fintan and Irene (Conor's brother and sister in law) and another brother Niall arrived to share a roast pork dinner cooked by Gerry. As well as the roast several different cheeses and bottles of red, white, prosecco and Baileys were consumed and the night concluded in the wee hours of Monday morning.
With the weather definitely on the improve we walked the 15 minutes into Cork for a look around about 10 this morning. The walk was a steady downhill gradient which meant the return journey was going to be a challenge so, to fortify ourselves, we (Lyndel, Jim, Frank) made our way up and down Oliver Plunkett street till we found a cafe with seating in the sun and had a coffee.
C and K were in town already tending to some personal matters so we arranged to meet them for lunch at 12:30pm. Jim stayed at the coffee cafe and F and I went our separate ways for the hour or so before we had to meet everyone back at the GPO.
Lunch was eaten at a close by restaurant and then we all split again to do our own thing - walking around the town, having another carafe of red, buying some souvenirs, drinking tea, looking inside and outside the many historic buildings and streets in Corcaigh, one of the world's top 10 destinations according to The Huffington Post and Lonely Planet.
The plan for dinner is to go to a local pub that has Irish entertainment and good food and immerse ourselves in what the people of Cork do - enjoy themselves!