Headed into Ciddy Center with Jayme on Thursday for the afternoon as a minor repeat of Monday. Mostly was just hungry and wanted to eat in town and have something local. We got dropped off on the quay and made our way around the streets. Looked down a side street and glanced a sandwich board which said “Food served all day” and decided to head towards it. It was The Gingerman which we had heard people mention before. As we sat and looked through the menu I looked around the place. Was trying to figure out what to drink while I was looking around the bar and noticed most people were having tea, coffee, or soda. Kind of struck me that no one was having a beer. Not uncommon at home for people eating lunch out during the week to have a beer with their meal even if it’s during the work day. Later was told by someone that people don’t typically do that here. I ordered a tea. With that I ordered the Irish stew which I knew I had to eventually have since I love lamb and don’t find lamb stew too often at home. On the subject of food I knew people would ask me if I had Irish stew and I couldn’t say, “No, but do you know what crubeens are?”. It was served piping hot and quite good. Later on Pat the owner stepped by to clear our dishes and we started talking to him. Told him we saw the sandwich board and decided to make our way over here. He then went into the local bureaucrats who kept threatening him because the board used to be at the end of the block where it was easier to see. He’s seen other boards in the spot he used to put his so he may put his back there eventually. Pat’s never been to the US and wish he had gone. His wife doesn’t like flying too much and a a 5-6 hour plan ride is just beyond her. Most of their travels have been wherever they can get in about 2-3 hours by plane. I told him to leave his wife at home but as he’s gotten older he less enthusiastic to fly as well. He also told me he wouldn’t tell is wife what I had just said.
After we left the Gingerman we strolled around for a short bit more. We walked into the shop we had been in on Monday and looked for things for people back home. No one really expects any gifts from me. I don’t even buy stuff for myself when i go places other than a shot glass to add to my collection. I don’t need tons of crap, just something to look at and remind me where I’ve been and everything important comes back to me after that. For that reason I don’t see the point of giving other people crap when I get back. “Here’s the fridge magnet I got when Tom went to Ireland.” It ends up being some random junk hanging around their house with no meaning to them. I did however ask about another O’Meara name placard for my grandmother due to the horrible printing on the one I found but she said they had no more and that particular card was just terrible. I figured that might mean something to her. Looked around the rest of the things there and there were tons of Guinness stuff but really I could get any of that back home. Only difference would be the pint seal on the glasses. Settled on a crystal mini-tumbler which said “Ireland” on it with the island cut into it.
Jayme and Keith were leaving for Dublin that evening by train and she had to be home soon and pack. I was supposed to join them the next day. She grabbed a cab and I walked around some more doing touristy stuff like seeing the old sites and taking pictures. Reginald’s Tower was open this time so I went in to see what it was all about. It formed a corner of the city walls that protected the former Viking settlement and is the oldest standing urban civic structure. In addition was where Strongbow of the Anglo-Norman invasion force met the daughter of the King of Leinster, Aoife. Aoife (anglicized as Eva) happens to be a pretty popular name in Waterford because of this story. As I made my way around I made sure to mind all the “Watch your head” signs as most of the doorways were as high as about my chin. As I climbed the stairwells in between each floor the height seemed to decrease. Not too bad when walking upstairs as I just had to hunch forward. A lot harder walking downstairs as I had to lean backwards to get down. My hair is styled upwards in the front so I moved slowly and used it like a cat uses it’s whiskers to make sure I wasn’t about to smack my head. I made it out alive and without leaving blood anywhere. From there I just walked around and took pictures before grabbing a taxi back.
Later that night I went out to dinner with someone from Waterford. Emiliano’s is a small Italian restaurant in Waterford and one of its best. After dinner we spent sometime at the Gingerman. Pat had just left a half hour before we arrived unfortunately. Afterwards we went down to Ruby’s for a few drinks. Another band playing tonight. Still got a kick out of “Burning Love” being followed by a Kings of Leon song. Made it to Muldoons across the street after a round and there were a few more people than the night before. One of the bartenders was the bassist from the band the night before at Ruby’s. It was their third gig and I wished them luck, and then downed my Jaegerbomb. Ended up dancing after that for a little bit. Next we ended up in Harvey’s for a round and stayed until close.