A little stronger, we start out for the second half of our cycling experience in Ireland.
Ennis is the principal town in County Claire and is on the River Fergus. The main attraction is a Franciscan Friary built around 1242 by the O'Brian family. The town is also famous for hearing traditional Irish music. We found great music both in a pub down the street (Abbey Street) from our hotel as well as in the pub at our hotel, the Old Ground Hotel. A problem for some of us cyclists is that we are pretty tired in the evening after cycling all day. In most of the pubs, the music doesn't start until around 9:30 at night. The Irish must all be night owls. The music at the pub down the street actually started much earlier, around 8:00 so we rushed down to enjoy some of the music before we crashed with exhaustion. We stayed there for a short while, but then headed back to the hotel pub which got some music going around 9:30. By the way, I learned that an Irish jig is actually a tune in 6/8 time. A slip jig is in 9/8 time.
Since it was a bank holiday coming up most stores were closed on Sunday. There was a candy store which was having a going out of business sale and everything was half off. I had gone in on Saturday and found a box of the Jameson Whiskey Fudge which I purchased. A new trip member, Susan Rexer, talked about when she went in and got some candy. She talked to the owner who is a Willy Wonka kind of guy with white hair that seemed to grow straight out. He had glasses and a wiley Irish smile. She told him about how she was cycling with a group of bicyclists and that we needed some high energy snacks to get us over the hill. He went on about how this mint candy had gotten men up to the top of Mt. Everest and showed her that particular candy as well as some chocolates she added to her purchase stash. Well, after hearing her story, I decided I better go back and check out this candy sale. I proceeded to tell the owner that I too was on the cycling trip. He smiled and showed me the best candies to get me up the hill, and again with the Mt.Everest story. Then we just chatted about where I was from and where our group was cycling. I also found another box of my whisky fudge. Ummm. They sure do help give me a boost when I need it on a long cycling day.