24 de agosto de 2009

Our stay in Ireland

Having finished my course at North Mon Language Institute, in Cork, it is time to remember and write down my impressions of these days in Ireland as well as to upload the album and videos that bring me so good memories of my first visit to Ireland, also known as the Emerald Island.

Ireland is compared to a precious gem ‘Emerald’ because of its captivating lush green natural beauty. The heavy rains in the western parts are responsible for the brilliant green grass. In fact, I think that Ireland has the most seducing landscapes I have ever seen.
During these days in August 2009, we have enjoyed irish typical food, the weather (taking into account how hot it is in Córdoba in summer) and, most of all,the hospitality and kindness of Irish people.

Thanks to Betty and Owen. We have been living in their cottage to rent, Lane's farmhouse. They have always been welcoming, generous and helpful to plan our itineraries. We enjoyed our stay in the cottage a lot.

Thanks also to Mary, Paddy and their children, especially Jenny, who gave us the chance to know a typical sport: camogie (hurling for girls), that together with hurling (a very fast game using a hockey-like stick or cuman) and gaelic football is one of their national sports. To learn more about these gaelic sports, I found this spanish website.

Thanks Jenny and Paddy to help my daughter to train camogie. She is very proud of you.

Here you are some images of the camogie match we saw at Inniscarra Sport Center:

Concerning the course, it could have been better. It is not a secret to be kept under our hat that they have to update many of the activities, to use new technologies and methodology as well as to bring manuals and bibliography up to date.

Nevertheless, we have made the most of it and overcome the disappointment. As always, the best part of these courses is the people you know.

All of them from Spain, except Gabriel, from Italy. And all of them great people: Mª José, José, Rafa, Mercedes, Rosi, Fran, Maite, Sergio, María, Almudena, Fernando and Fe. Good luck, mates. I hope we meet again in a future ocassion.

Interested places we visited:

Beara Peninsula, Dingle Pensinsula, Gougane Barra, Cobh, Ring of Kerry, Kinsale, Blarney, Killarney, Kenmare, Bantry, Fota Wildlife Park, Croshaven, Cork City Gaol, Blackrock Castle Observatory, among others.

Tasty food/drinks we tried:
Irish stew, Soda bread, Oysters, Irish coffee, Beamish stout, etc...
Find some more irish recipes.

Ireland is as interesting as its history: Find out who St. Patrick was, irish traditions and symbols (the shamrock, the leprechaun, etc...) and historical facts as emigration and famine.

Talking about the Irish Potato Famine, you will find this SITE suitable for your students. They can work their way through a village, clicking on different places, pitures and videos in order to know about this aspect of irish history.

If you wish, have a look at our album about this august in Ireland:

In fact, we have not done all the 10 things to do in Ireland before you die. We had left some, so we will have to come back.

What about you? Have you ever been to Ireland? Check how much you know about this country by means of this TEST.

Finally, we can not forget irish music. Irish music has kept many of its traditional aspects and has itself influenced many forms of music, such as country and roots music in the USA.
Some music instruments that have been used for centuries are the fiddle, the uilleann pipes (a sort of elaborate bagpipe), the tin whistle (a sort of flute that is actually made of nickel-silver, brass, or aluminum), the bodhran (an ancient type of framedrum that was traditionally used in warfare rather than music) and the harp, that has been a beloved emblem of Ireland.

Famous Irish bands and musicians that have achieved success internationally are: The Dubliners, Enya, The Pogues, The Corrs, The Chieftains, Van Morrison, The Cranberries, U2, Rory Gallagher, etc...

I still sing some of these songs at the top of my lungs every time I see the video and lyrics of these irish songs:

Molly Malone. Lyrics and Video. The Dubliners.

The Dubliners - Fields Of Athenry lyrics | LyricsMode.com

Dubliners - Wild Rover lyrics | LyricsMode.com

Pogues - Fairytale Of New York lyrics | LyricsMode.com

If you feel like leaving a comment, please do it. Your comments feed the blog and will be welcomed.

5 de agosto de 2009

I am in Cork (Ireland)

Yes, here we are. I am having a course on teacher training.

Cork, beautiful city, 18 degrees and showers, and....full of spanish people!

Almost everybody in my class is spanish, even from the same city.

Cork is not a very big city so you can go walking and see interesting buildings, pubs, etc... in the city centre.

In fact, it is a nice place to visit, the landscapes are worth seeing, green everywhere. It is not surprising at all as it rains most of the time. Today we are lucky and it is a sunny and warm day.

Nevertheless, it is nice to come back home and light the fireplace. As it is a farm house, my daughter is very proud of helping the landlady to pick up the eggs of the hens.

Of course...I am drinking beer...

The most challenging achievement is to drive on the "wrong side" of the road.