Monday, June 14, 2010

Ireland Part I

Part 1 of my trip to Ireland:
The view from Larne, and The Carrick-a-rede- rope bridge

First, I wanted to show off just a couple pictures from the town that we stayed in the majority of the time we were on vacation. I don't think Larne is really known as a 'tourist hub' of sorts, but we are lucky enough to have family friends who own a home in and who are originally from Larne. They were nice enough to let us stay there while we were on vacation!

The house was right across the street from the coastal waters:

And even better?
Something called the "Highway to Health."

This fun little walk was right down the road from our house. It was essentially a walking path along the water with super fun, fitness equipment spread out along the walk. My mom and Lee thought this one was the best:
(and it was)

We spent many nights walking and playing along this path, which was really good considering how we ate some nights (can anyone say fish and chips much?!)

Our first actual adventure was up the coastal highway to the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.

(the walk over to the actual bridge)

Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge is a rope suspension bridge. The bridge links the mainland to the tiny Carrick Island. It spans 65 feet (20meters) and is 98 feet (30 meters) above the rocks and water below.

Up until we got to the actual bridge I was dead set on going across the bridge. When I got there however, I decided it was most definitely not for me. The wind was blowing really hard, and the swaying bridge was way higher up than I had anticipated. I have an incredibly ridiculous fear of heights, so after pacing back and forth for about 30 seconds I said no way.

My mom and Lee went on ahead and I watched them walk across it feeling a tiny bit let down that I wasn't with them. That was when Ricky grabbed me. Ricky was the man in charge of ripping the ticket to let you across the bridge. He kept telling me I HAD to go across! Then other visitors started telling me I HAD to go across! Ricky (and the peer pressure from every visitor to the bridge) convinced me to walk down the very steep set of steps leading to the bridge with promises that if I felt too scared I could go right back up the steps.

By the time I finished walking down those steep steps I had already made up my mind to just turn around when Ricky was standing on the rope bridge and asking me to just take two steps out to it. Further more he stopped all other traffic on the bridge so that it was just him and me. Once I stepped on the bridge I had no choice but to go across. At the other end all I could think to ask him was if he would please do the same thing so that I could get back across.

He did:
(yes, I am that scared girl in a pink sweat shirt, inching her way across the bridge)

In that moment I didn't even care that there were over 8 people waiting to walk across the bridge behind me, or that my entire family was laughing at me. My mind was only on survival! Once I finished and high fived Ricky I turned around to see Lee and my mom walking with a bunch of other people:

(Lee would be the first person practically skipping across the bridge [no fear of heights], with my mom behind him)

They were walking much faster, and gosh darn-it, even managing to smile while doing it! It's okay though. I gave everyone a good laugh and I am super, super, proud to have walked the bridge myself! Besides that, the view on the other end was amazing and totally worth it.

Well that is all for now!
Tomorrow will be all about the Giant's Causeway (flickr favorite's style)

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