Thursday, April 30

The journey begins

We're in IRELAND!!! And (lucky enough) we have the INTERNET! The hotel we are staying at in Cork, Ireland has free internet and the best continental breakfast ever! We'll be here until Monday morning, so we'll keep you posted until then. After that, I'm not so sure we'll be lucky to end up with the internet again.

Anyway, we left for our trip early Tuesday morning at 8am to the Salt Lake airport. Our flight left at 11:30, we arrived in Atlanta around 4pm (their time) but didn't leave for Dublin until 9pm. We did make a dinner stop at On The Border in the Atlanta airport though and it was divine (and probably our last time eating Mexican food until May 26) :).

The flight to Dublin was 8.5 hours long but Sister Hall guaranteed that we wouldn't get jet lag if we slept during as much of the flight as possible. So Anthony and I took a generous dose of Benadryl AND melatonin and slept pretty much the whole way there. IS was fantastic. One moment I was dosing off and the next I was being woken up by the flight attendant for breakfast with only an hour left on the flight. Others weren't as fortunate (or, rather, they didn't take any drugs) and were up watching movies and playing games through the entire flight.

Once we arrived in Dublin, however, our traveling wasn't over. We still had a 4 hour bus ride to Cork, in the rain (of course). Again, Sister Hall gave us her advice and urged us not to sleep on the bus on the way to Cork. I tried listening to Harry Potter 7 but the narrator's voice ended up putting me to sleep faster. We stopped for lunch in I don't remember where (somewhere halfway between Dublin and Cork) and had our first taste of Irish food. Anthony had traditional Shepherd's Pie and I had Quiche Lorraine. The vegetables were delicious! Most we were already familiar with but a few we weren't - like parsnips and rutabagas.

Finally we arrived in Cork, took the lift up to our hotel rooms and had a group walk around town.

Sidenote: At the beginning of the trip, Nathan (our tour manager) gave us our per diem cards from BYU so we can pay for all of our meals. Their like debit cards with a maximum amount of money available to us. We were given about $12 per meal (excluding breakfast) which transfers to about €9.

So, as we were taking a lovely walk around Cork, we quickly noticed that €9 wouldn't hardly cover a meal at a sit down restaurant or pub. But then we soon found the solution: Marks and Spencer. The UK equivalent to Target, but it also offers ready-made meals to go that are SO much cheaper than cafes and SO yummy. Today we both ate a full dinner, which included pesto pasta salad, 3 bean salad, cheese and bread, AND chocolate pudding for only €11... for both of us.

So far, it hasn't felt like any other tour I've been on. We been in a hotel the whole time and we haven't really performed formally. We did have an informal performance in the Cork library this morning. The audience was probably 85% senior citizens but they were the cutest old irish people and they were the most grateful audience. We only sang for about 20 minutes and even after we performed one encore there was an old man sitting in the front row who yelled for us to do one more. It was so cute, but we didn't really have time since there were other people scheduled to perform after us.

Later on, we did have another informal performance in the Cork City Hall for anyone who wanted to come. The performance was mostly for us to be able to get a feel of the acoustics in the room and be prepared for our real concert tomorrow. But there were a few groups of elementary school children that seemed to enjoy it very much. :)

After that, we ate lunch, had a little rehearsal and went on another walk with Sister Hall around town. This one was a little longer and we visited the beautiful St. Anne's Cathedral. There were lots of cool pictresque spots on the way as well and we took plenty of pictures, don't worry. We also saw an old traditional Irish pub with traditional Irish music playing nightly. Pubs aren't exactly the same as bars are in the States. People go to pubs for socializing and eating as well as for the ale, and Sister Hall said we're allowed to be there for the Irish music at 9:30 pm. We're considering it. :)

That's all for right now, and instead of posting every single picture/video we take on our blog, I'm planning on putting them in a Google web album accessible to all of you! So if you want to see everything, be patient, it's coming. We love and miss you all! :)


Mrs. Hadlock said...

Woman! You did chop your hair, you did!! :)

Yay for updates from Ireland! I wish I was there... :)

Cathy said...

It looks wonderful and you look like you're having a great time (can't wait)


So fun, that is so great that you not only get to have that experience, but you get to go and share the experience with your husband! Have a wonderful trip.

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