8 18 2013

Wrote up a blog last Sunday, and posted it.  But not on my usual spot.  Will have to find it and try to move the blasted thing.  (I just copied it onto this location.)  Learning a new program, Word Press, is not exactly the fun part.  Talking to friends is the fun part.

Last Sunday was a ‘carless day.’  And today is shaping up to be the same.  At Teagasc, the best day was Friday.  Michael H. is the tillage specialist.  (Tillage is crops like grain, or spuds, or rape seed (canola).  He had income and expense and production data from a farm for several years.  Michael and James McD and I worked together on a couple of budgeting programs for 3-4 hours for this farm.  Now Michael must talk with the farmer some more to see what he would like to do next.  But it was a sizeable problem, and all 3 of us were in the office, with no pressing deadlines, so it was exciting to put our heads together.  Almost like ‘Cascade Training’ (a new-to-me buzzword for ‘train the trainer.’)

Taming of the Shrew, Kiklenny Arts Festival

Taming of the Shrew, Kilkenny Arts Festival

I was in Kilkenny 3 times during the week:  Tuesday evening I went to an outdoor performance of ‘Taming of the Shrew.’  In a courtyard of Kilkenny Design, had been built as horse stables for Kilkenny Castle across the road.  Second row.  Lots of fun.  8 women in the cast, no sets, no props.  Globe Theatre on Tour, www.shakespearesglobe.com

Wednesday, I took the day off and went fishing on the Barrow River for a couple of hours-tried a few different places.  Caught 2 perch, nothing dramatic but something.  Visited with a fellow from Hungary who had been fishing all night- had caught a couple of little brown trout, and a dace- nothing very dramatic either.  But it sure was nice to be out.  I guess my lure first got wet a little after 7.  The next day at work, a friend said she had seen me on her way to work!  Small town!

Kilkenny Arts Festival

Kilkenny Arts Festival

Then I took a back-way to Kilkenny, along a ridge, with nice views to the north and south.  I had a ticket for a show at 1 pm at a little church.  Three guys from 2 bands that I have listening to for a number of years: Altan and Four Men + a Dog.     http://altan.ie/   http://www.fourmenandadog.net/   Two fiddles and a guitar, one guy switched between fiddle and 4-string banjo.  It was really good, an hour, I was right in the front row!  (Interesting that twin fiddles is a County Donegal ‘thing’ and Bob Wills usually had twin fiddles with his Texas Playboys band).  I hung around for a bit of a parade, but was kind of disappointed by it.  I was not disappointed with the pint of Smithwicks draft that I had- a brown ale, that is made right there in Kilkenny.  Best pint of Smithwicks that I have had.  http://www.irelandforvisitors.com/articles/kilkenny_med_city.htm

Irish Harp School concert

Irish Harp School concert

While walking anywhere, I keep my eye on notice boards and such.  I get rewarded, intermittently.  Found what looked good:  Irish Harp School concert in the Chapter House of St Mary’s Cathedral.  Wow to the just re-worked room, and wow to the music.  Two solo harpists, a third with a singer, and a guy playing uileann pipes- a set from the 1850s, and then a set from the 1760s.  Great music.  http://www.irishharp.org/       http://stmaryscathedral.ie/chapter-room/

It was funny during the first harp tunes.  I was about 10 feet away from the harp.  The woman had the harp turned so I was looking right at her left had playing the strings under her chin.  Then I

Irish Harp School, Ronan Browne, pipes

Irish Harp School, Ronan Browne, pipes

realized that I hardly ever see the bottom of people’s hands.  Especially their thumbs.  (Think about it!)  It was very interesting.  I did see the inside of the Minister’s hands at church today– but it is not very often that we see the working side of peoples’ hands.

HeritageWeek.ie began this weekend and runs thru next weekend, all across the country.  Lots of special historical events and special stuff.  Here in Carlow, they are calling it ‘Carlow 800’ since the castle here (now just a fragment) started being built in 1213.  I went to a really interesting 1.5 hour history walk in Castledermot-on the main road between Dublin and Kilkenny  (just like Carlow).  http://www.roundtowers.org/castledermot/ And the ‘motorway’ (freeway) still connects them. 

Moone high cross, Flight into Egypt, Loaves and Fishes

Moone high cross, Flight into Egypt, Loaves and Fishes

Then to a walk at Rathgall, a ring-fort that started in 3000 BC or so, and for a while was a factory, where they poured bronze into molds to make spear heads and knives that were traded around Europe.  http://visitwicklow.ie/attractions/rathgall-hillfort/    I could not take a good photo of a ringfort.  But here is nice one from the high crosses in Moone.

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