Countdown to St. Paddy's Day - Day Three
Today we drove to the tiny village of Ballyglass in County Mayo where our ancestors once owned a peat farm.
Sadly, all our Irish relatives that remained in the country have passed on. There are currently only about 240 people living in this sleepy little town that boasts one store, one school, one soccer field and two pubs.
After years of research, we located our family's burial sites, and we had tombstones made to honor them.
Most of the town came out for the blessing - it was really special to meet all the residents who had fun stories about my grandmother when she was a young teen.
The most amusing stories were about my grandmother walking across the peat bog. I can almost imagine her all dressed up heading to her school dances trudging across the muddy tundra. So, we followed her footsteps squishing through the mucky wetlands wondering how she looked by the time she finally made it to the party! We then enjoyed a pint with the locals at The Old Ground Pub, a very cheerful spot.
The Cobbler's Bar has a casual warm atmosphere. We learned a lot about the area from the resident patrons and friendly bartenders.
We taught the locals about a popular drink from America (Irish Car Bomb) which we renamed the Irish Sonic Boom - Bailey's Irish cream, Jameson's Irish Whiskey and Guinness Stout. To be official, get yourself a set of Guinness Pint Glasses!
We asked our new pub friends where we could find the best fish and chips - they all suggested The Towers Bar and Restaurant. So we skipped off to dinner.
We were so glad we asked, but had no idea that the place they recommended would turn out to be the best fish and chips any of us have ever had! The humungous portion of fish was very crisp and crunchy on the outside and fresh, flaky and juicy on the inside.
We rolled back to the castle for a whiskey and an Irish game that reminded us of Dungeons and Dragons. Loser had to sleep in the Blood Room.