Thursday, 17 November 2011

Belfast’s Brilliant!


I arrived at 8am on Friday morning, and Mags met me and we went to St Georges Market for breakfast. I had pancakes with bacon and syrup – utterly delicious. She had porridge with all sorts of toppings.

Here’s Mags looking very happy


After that we went to the City Hall, and stood for the silent Act Of Remembrance at 11am.

Then into a few shops – mostly just to browse, and marvel at the incredible prices Avoca charge for things!

Back home for lunch, then the heavens opened, and we collected the boys from school in the sort of downpour usually described as ‘of biblical proportions’! I remember none of the details of this sheep sculpture


Friday night we went to the Lyric Theatre for the One-Act-Play Event.

Saturday dawned bright and glorious. We drove off to Carrick-A-RedeDSCF2659DSCF2660DSCF2661


I felt ridiculously nervous on the path down to the bridge [you have to pay for the privilege of being terrorised]but I was really determined to do it this time. No wimping out. Mags took a photo of me as I crossed- and I turned round for a second shot!DSCF2662DSCF2663

My intrepid friend appeared to show no fear whatsoever



But it is high, and the white water does churn beneath you…



Across the sea, we could make out the Scottish coastline!


We tried to kid ourselves we were very tall by taking photos of our shadows.

Met up with Alan and the boys for lunch, then went with Josh to the Giant’s Causeway.

Hexagons of basalt – so exciting.

Much clambering and shrieking with laughter!DSCF2671DSCF2672DSCF2673DSCF2674DSCF2675DSCF2676

Above, I’m hiding in the cleft of the rock, whilst below another tourist rests on ‘The boot’. Josh and I marvelled at the lovely old Victorian post-box [also hexagonal]


Then we went on to meet up with Mags’ friend Catherine who works at the Corrymeela Community, and enjoyed supper with them.


DSCF2683Here’s a sculpture in The Croi, their worship space [pronounced ‘Cree’ it means ‘the heart’]

I shall blog more about this evening another time – there was so much to see and think about.

A huge wild goose hovered over us as we went to share a meal with the good and gentle people in this community.


Sunday was Remembrance Day.

Again, a thought provoking and challenging experience for me – so different from the way this day is marked back in my own village.I really appreciated worship at Mags’ church, and the way Alan led the music group.

In the afternoon, it was great to go and meet Mags’ Mum.

DSCF2690Monday was incredibly civilised- coffee, cake and crochet. Catherine taught me how to do granny squares and I have been hooking away happily ever since. Photos of my large green creation will be posted shortly!

It’s amazing how a group of you can get together and craft and chat together and have so much in common.DSCF2691

Here is the famously talented Catherine [of Kids and Capers] who was very patient and a brilliant teacher. I’m looking fat here [too much cake recently]

On Monday evening I was the Guest Speaker at the Mothers’ Union at Church of the Good ShepherdDSCF2693.

My theme was JOY.

A welcoming and responsive audience – and still more great cakes. Lots of running is called for next week I think!

Tuesday was quieter

And now I am home. I seem to have crammed an awful lot into my visit – and I haven’t even mentioned the craft activities and story telling I did with the boys, or the mouthwatering cakes in the Cosy Chair Cafe or the delights of Terrence Rattigan of the KJV400 exhibition in City Hall or the Boys’ Brigade Shop…

Josh, I am sorry I couldn’t stay as long as you wanted me to – but I hope I can return before too long, and maybe bring Bob with me next time. Matthew, I am dead impressed by your multiplication skills, and wish I had you in one of the classes I teach. Alan, thank you for the way you led the worship on Sunday – and finally, Mags, thanks for coming up with the idea in the first place. It has been a truly fabulous time – I feel as if we have been friends for years.

Thank you all, so much, for sharing your home, friends, church and beautiful country with me!


  1. How absolutely lovely! Just a fantastic visit, and so good that this is the kind of thing that blogging enables.

  2. Thanks so much for sharing these pictures--you can tell how much fun you two were having. And that hat Mags is wearing in that rocky spot you visited? That's exactly the sort of hat I would have picked for her.

    Enjoyed all the mentions of cake. Perhaps a few more cake pictures as well?

    By the by, collards are somewhat similar to Kale; the same idea anyway, though less curly. Between you and me, I prefer kale, but all greens are good.


  3. What an incredible trip. The pictures are beautiful! Congratulations on your weight loss, I know personally the reward and the feeling of shedding the weight. I loved your comment on my post today. Have a blessed day!

  4. Looks like you had a wonderful trip! Brave lady to cross that bridge! Thanks for sharing with us.
    Have a great day!

  5. I have friends who live near Belfast, and I've seen photos of them on that bridge too. I'd love to go there, it's on my to-do list - and I hope I'll be as brave when I actually get there!


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