It’s been twelve years since I’ve laid my eyes on what I thought back then was the most unspoiled and naturally beautiful sight I had seen on this earth. The wait to return ended this morning. As I said earlier in my blog, when Christiana and I booked this trip to Ireland I had one sight in mind that was the only must do for the entire two weeks. It was the Giant’s Causeway. When I was in Ireland in 2002 I spent one week in the country area of Westmeath and one week in the Southwest seaside area of Killarney. Sandwiched in between those two weeks was one night in County Antrim. Those memories are the thing that legends are made of in our minds.
When I was here twelve years ago it caught me totally off guard. I had never heard of the Giant’s Causeway. It was a merely a gravel road down into a World natural heritage sight and it attracted only a smattering of visitors even in the high season of July. When my ex-wife and I arrived there in the late afternoon of a summer day in 2002 we had a pint and an afternoon meal. It was there I was first introduced to garlic fries, which are very crispy and light fried potatoes tossed with clarified garlic butter. To say that nirvana meets potato is an understatement in the very least. The hotel itself was a step back in time too the 1800’s with it’s rustic wood finishes and ornate crown m
oldings. The staff was polite and attentive in a British butler sort of way. The impression it left on me must have been indelible, because it survived over a decade, through a divorce and many other life changes and it made me want to come back more than anything in the world.
Christiana knew how much this portion of the trip mattered to me so after a day of fulfilling her burning desires the see graffiti in Belfast, we switched to mine. Just like I came along for her ride the day before, she dove in as we rolled up to the Causeway Hotel as the evening skies turned to dusk about 7:15 p.m. Lucky for us we came after the crowds had left for the day. All that remained was a handful of cars that belonged top the overnight guests of The Causeway Hotel, our lodging spot for the night. I had selected this lodging as the only pre-booked lodging for the trip because I knew we had to stay there. Staying at The Causeway Hotel permits guests to access the Causeway prior to the crowds arriving since you are already on the site when you wake up in the morning.
We took a pre-sunset walk just so I could look over the head of the hill and drink in that view I only had in my memories for twelve years now. Let’s just say it was worth the wait. There are many more stories within this story, but the road awaits. It’s strange to be looking for more time within a holiday. Perhaps that’s my next lesson?