Odd little happenstances...

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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby ailish78 » 25 Mar 2016, 19:04

Thank you Lee for your really helpful post. I've been to Ireland before but never to Cork. I'm half Irish :) I have ancestors from both Donegal and Derry. I've already checked a few things out to see in Cork thanks to this really helpful site. I've already made a list. I will be arriving in Cork very early in the morning, so I thought I would go to visit Rory at the cemetery in the afternoon already. I'll probably take the bus, I don't want to drive in a town I don't really know. Is it difficult to find? I'll be there for a total of 4 days, so I hope I will be able to fit everything in. Of course I want to visit Blarney Castle. I'll probably need most of the day for that. Do you think so? I did'nt know about the place where Rory wrote A Million Miles Away. Thank you for that. Do you know if he still has family living in Cork? I thought Donal lived in London.
so did I make a good choice with the hotel? It was offered to me in the travel agent and I thought that was really weird since that was the street that Rory grew up in. It's got to be a sign, ha,ha,ha. I doubt I'll be doing very much in the evenings since I'll be on my own and I don't think I'll be going out on my own in the evening in a strange town. I'd quite like to go to a bar to listen to some music, but it would have to be somewhere very close to the hotel. Do you think it is relatively safe around there?
I'm really looking forward to it. :)
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby SUBY1974 » 25 Mar 2016, 22:12

I went on my own in 2012 and I was fine. I stayed at the Jury hotel in Cork. To get to Blarney and Ballincollig you can take a bus every 20mins. I can't remember the number but do ask the bus staff members. They can help.
The bus to Ballincollig stops before a sign called Innis Carra and then there is a10mins walk from there. Its a bit tricky at first to reach. The first time I was driven there. The view of Ballincollig hills is amazing. I do love sitting near Rory and yeah we chat to him. I also leave a variety of gifts there over the years for him.
Do visit the Oliver Plunkkett music venue. You can eat there and listen to live music. The new Crowley Music store is there. Mick Crowley's daughter runs it and she is lovely. The food is good there.
Also there is an English Market in Cork and on McCurtain street there is a lovely Japanese restaurant and a pizza place. I use to love walking by the river locks in the evening with Susie and watching the sunset over Cork. You do feel very close to Rory in Cork. You feel him everywhere. :mrgreen:

The hotel your staying at does good food I believe. I had a nice Thai curry there. I do love Cork. I love everything southern in the British Isles hence why I was born in London maybe. X
Last edited by SUBY1974 on 25 Mar 2016, 22:34, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby SUBY1974 » 25 Mar 2016, 22:30

I just want to say when I first visited Rory I was talking to the headstone area. He is lying facing the other way. Ger of Cyprus told me. This sounds a little silly but I was technically talking to his feet! So was Susie. I did not know. They all face, facing the sun. It's something to do with ressurection to eternal life. It's in Catholic religion. I believe the soul goes on,so I don't have a problem with that. Hopefully when I go again, I will talk to Rory facing the right way. He must have a right chuckle with us talking to his feet!!
I am sure he can see his resting site and see the beautiful gifts laid out to him. He must know he is so loved. Its very emotional being there and I find obviously, that is where his spirit is the strongest. Subrata.xx We also leave a gift for his mum. X
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby Lee61 » 26 Mar 2016, 09:54

We were only there for 2 days Ailish but we did have a car so it made it easier. The hotel is quite nice, the staff were lovely,
very helpful and the bar areas have been refurbished recently and there is a pool and gym at the back of the Hotel. We walked around at night and felt quiet safe, there are a few little bars on Maccurtain street itself, and many over the river in the main area of the City. The Oliver Plunkett was always crowded so we didn't go in there, but as Suby said Crowleys Music store has moved over there from it's old shop. The Isaacs Hotel had good food and is opposite the Hotel, and there is a new burger place on the site of Crowleys old shop. The cemetery was a little hard to find but we asked the locals who directed us no problem. Ballycotton cliffs were quite a long drive so may be a little far for you with no vehicle.
As for Rory's family, I believe one of Donal's sons lives in Cork city and I think Rory has cousins etc. still living there also.
I'm sure you will really enjoy your trip, Cork is beautiful like all of Ireland. :)
Last edited by Lee61 on 26 Mar 2016, 23:51, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby RobertaSparrow » 26 Mar 2016, 21:20

ailish78 wrote:Thank you Lee for your really helpful post. I've been to Ireland before but never to Cork. I'm half Irish :) I have ancestors from both Donegal and Derry. I've already checked a few things out to see in Cork thanks to this really helpful site. I've already made a list. I will be arriving in Cork very early in the morning, so I thought I would go to visit Rory at the cemetery in the afternoon already. I'll probably take the bus, I don't want to drive in a town I don't really know. Is it difficult to find? I'll be there for a total of 4 days, so I hope I will be able to fit everything in. Of course I want to visit Blarney Castle. I'll probably need most of the day for that. Do you think so? I did'nt know about the place where Rory wrote A Million Miles Away. Thank you for that. Do you know if he still has family living in Cork? I thought Donal lived in London.
so did I make a good choice with the hotel? It was offered to me in the travel agent and I thought that was really weird since that was the street that Rory grew up in. It's got to be a sign, ha,ha,ha. I doubt I'll be doing very much in the evenings since I'll be on my own and I don't think I'll be going out on my own in the evening in a strange town. I'd quite like to go to a bar to listen to some music, but it would have to be somewhere very close to the hotel. Do you think it is relatively safe around there?
I'm really looking forward to it. :)


My daughter and I stayed in Cork for about a week. Compared to our home towns we found Cork to be a delightful little town. I am originally from Los Angeles, my daughter lives in Portland, Oregon. I don't have a drop of Irish blood in my ancestry, as far as I know, but my daughter does, her father has some distant relatives in Cork. I found the people there, and in all of Ireland to be very kind and helpful.

We rented a car, and with the aid of the GPS, and a few days of learning how to drive on the opposite side of the very narrow Irish roads in the much quieter traffic town of Ballyshannon, we were ready to tackle the Irish highways and heavier traffic in and around Cork.

If you have a smartphone, I strongly encourage you to install a GPS app, such as Google Maps, onto it. We relied on that to get around. That is how we found St. Olivers, where Rory's body is laid to rest. Without the GPS we would probably still be wandering around Cork trying to find the cemetery. :D Once I got out of the car, somehow I walked straight to the grave, but finding the cemetery itself was a bit of an adventure.

And don't think the GPS would only be helpful in a car, we used it in our walking tour of Cork- used it to find the venue for the Rory festival there, to find the new Crowley's store ( a must visit for any Rory fan), which is above a pub that is a perfect spot for lunch Oliver Plunkett's). One thing I noticed, when we asked our GPS app to route us to Crowley's it kept routing us to the original store where Rory bought his famous Strat, and from there you can see the street that he used to live on.

We visited Blarney Castle on our 3rd day there. We were going to skip that, because on the map it looked like too much of a hassle to get there, but after Sarah programmed it into the GPS we found it was just a few minutes away, and we spent half a day there. Great fun, but a bit touristy. We had enough time in the evening to catch a movie at the local cinema. The next evenings were the start of the Cork Rocks for Rory festivities.

We were there for the Cork Rocks for Rory events, so we did go out in the evening, again, with the aid of the GPS. And as far as feeling safe in the evening there, my daughter, in her early 30s and I in my early 60s were very comfortable walking about in Cork in the evening. At one point while I was at the Cork venue watching the bands, my daughter walked down the block by herself and had dinner at an Italian restaurant, then met back up with me at the venue. So, in a strange town, it is sensible to be cautious, but basically Cork was a very pleasant town. Remember to relax and have fun! 8-)
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby RobertaSparrow » 26 Mar 2016, 21:44

SUBY1974 wrote:I just want to say when I first visited Rory I was talking to the headstone area. He is lying facing the other way. Ger of Cyprus told me. This sounds a little silly but I was technically talking to his feet! So was Susie. I did not know. They all face, facing the sun. It's something to do with ressurection to eternal life. It's in Catholic religion. I believe the soul goes on,so I don't have a problem with that. Hopefully when I go again, I will talk to Rory facing the right way. He must have a right chuckle with us talking to his feet!!
I am sure he can see his resting site and see the beautiful gifts laid out to him. He must know he is so loved. Its very emotional being there and I find obviously, that is where his spirit is the strongest. Subrata.xx We also leave a gift for his mum. X


I don't know if it's a Catholic thing, orienting the body a certain way, perhaps an Irish tradition. I had not considered that. I sat to his side and spoke to him, and you're right, it is a very intense place. His body is laid to rest there, but his spirit is free, and that is what I could sense. I found it to be an intensely peaceful place. The sun was out, the breeze warm and swirling all around.

I left some gifts for Rory also, flowers, a little bottle of Jack Daniels, and a little solar lantern for the night time. I don't know how long they would remain there, but for a while the little light would be there anyway. :)

I also left a card with a photo and obituary from one of the musicians in one of the tribute bands who had passed away the year before in Ballyshannon. Barry McGivern's bass player Rodney passed away suddenly at the festival in Ballyshannon in 2014, and while I was there the following year I saw the card in the lobby of the Dorrian Hotel in Ballyshannon, picked it up and read it. I remember chatting with Jim McClymont about Rodney the year before. Jim had been visiting with him in a pub shortly before it happened. I read the card, put it in my coat pocket. A week and a day later while sitting with Rory I remembered the card, the musician/fan who had wanted to honor Rory by playing his music in Ballyshannon. I took the card out of my pocket, read it again, and it seemed appropriate, Rory loved seeing his fans, he'd be honored at the man's dedication, so I left that card for Rory as well.
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby ailish78 » 26 Mar 2016, 22:28

' I took the card out of my pocket, read it again, and it seemed appropriate, Rory loved seeing his fans, he'd be honored at the man's dedication, so I left that card for Rory as well.'

That was a really nice thing to do Cynthia and as you say very appropriate. I think I will leave some flowers. I inherited some plectrums from my friend Bill when he passed away and I've always kept them in a small box. I never use plectrums. I play classical guitar. That just made me think that it might be a good idea to take some with me and leave them at Rory's graveside.
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby SUBY1974 » 28 Mar 2016, 19:55

Hi Ailish, Blarney Castle for me was really like a fairytale castle from a fairytale book. It is just exquisite. It was built for defence but its not like other castles I have seen before. It is magical.
Its very green and it has a botanical garden with different species of plant life and so many little waterfalls. Being Piscean, I love waterfalls and being by water. Pisces is a water sign and we are free flowing. We like to think by water. Its something that Rory shared.
Susie and I are nature lovers. She studied ecology and I studied biology. Plus both of us are environmentalists. So being in those gardens was like Paradise. Nature is healing. Being a city girl its nice to get away into nature.
There is alot of interesting sculptures everywhere but kissing Blarney Stone was an experience for me. But I believe in doing something once and I did kiss that stone! My communication skills have skyrocketed - honest. I do get vertigo but managed to get up there in the castle turretts!
I don't know if the botanical gardens were there when Rory visited during his IT74.
One thing I loved the most was the stone circle. Because Susie and I are clairsentinent we could feel the ancient stone energies, even from the Dolmans. There is also evidence of the first prehistoric Irish settlement and fantastic Wishing Area. Kids will love it. Because I like ancient stone circles,I will be visiting Stonehenge again this year. At 17 I told my family its the most amazing monument in the world. They were "Really? Its just a couple of ancient boulders". :roll: They wish!
Tourists do visit and there is a nice gift shop. It good to have a GPS if you are driving.
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Re: Odd little happenstances...

Postby SUBY1974 » 28 Mar 2016, 23:14

It was lovely what you did for Rory Cynthia. Subrata.x
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