Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Ireland & London graduation trip

After my graduation, my parents and I toured Ireland~
They were here only for a short one week, so we could only fit in a few places. Ultimately, we decided on Dublin, Galway and Cork.

My graduation 

Baby A; wouldn't have survived med school without her! My housemate for 3 years in Cork!

So.. my graduation hat fell off when I walked up the stairs. One of the most embarrassing moments in my life!! Thank god everyone just laughed it off xD

BruEire group~

I am extremely grateful for my parents. With only a few days in Cork, they helped me to move my stuff from my place to J's place, reducing their time to tour around Cork.. Initially, I wanted to bring them to Blarney Castle, and perhaps Fota Park, but that did not happen :( It really touched my heart when my dad said the reason they came to Cork was for my graduation and helping me to move out. It warms my heart and make me realise that it's not about where you go, or what you do, it's about the people who you do these things with, and the people you travel with. 
I'm forever indebted to my parents and I love them very much. Thank you Ma & Pa!!

Around Cork, they managed to walk around Wilton area (my place) and experience my uni life; which was pretty boring xD We rented a car, so we drove to city centre and they get to see the vibrant city of Cork -- Tesco, English Market, etc. 

For my pre-graduation dinner, I treated my parents and J to Greenes Restaurant -- a place that I've been wanting to try! I opted for their 10 course degustation menu:
I really enjoyed it :) I hope they did as well. My tastebud was satiated~

On the day of my graduation, we went to try Cafe Paradiso -  a restaurant I've been dying to try. It's a vegetarian restaurant and according to reviews, even meat lovers would highly recommend the dishes there. I'm actually very impressed with their service, ambience, and food. Even dad liked it! Surprisingly, it's very filling as well!

Complimentary hors d'oeuvre

Lime grilled haloumi, beluga lentils, burnt aubergine puree, prstachio dukkah, orange & sultana pickles
Roast beetroot, blackberries, hazelnuts, watercress, crozier blue
Grilled cauliflower, cashew korma, spinach, mustard & pickled raisins

Feta & pistachio couscous cake, smoky greens, lemon chickpeas, coriander yoghurt, zhoug oil, date jam
Chilli glazed panfried tofu, choi, oyster mushrooms, tamarind coconut broth, rice noodles, aduki wonton
Pumpkin thyme risotto, grilled romanesco, lemon thyme oil, walnut crumb, cratloe hill's sheep's cheese

Rhubarb and rosemary custard
Blood orange posset, almond ricciarelli
Dark chocolate pave, popcorn ice-cream and peanut mousse

We also went to Gougane Barra, which A said it's her family's favourite place in Cork. It's scenic but I was a tad bit disappointed. Perhaps due to the weather (as usual, gloomy), I find it rather bland xD Maybe I had too much expectations from A.

Mizen Head
This -- is worth the drive! It took us nearly an hour or more to reach Mizen Head. The road towards there was narrow and dangerous! Mizen Head is the most southwesterly point on all Ireland, and I'm glad at least we get to visit this!

Sandwich for lunch. The classic irish way of eating sandwiches is to put Tatyo chips into the sandwich!

Cork --> Galway takes approximately 3 hours. Sunny weather blessing our ride! The car ride from Cork to Galway was smooth with the motorway :) Love car rides with karaoke~ hehe
Summer Lovin'

Cliffs of Moher
The most tourist visited site in Ireland 

Salthill Promenade 

My parents really enjoyed Galway. The city centre is very centralised, unlike Cork's. You could shop for most of the stuff within the 2 streets in Galway, and perhaps the weather was great which added the happy vibes!

We rented an Airbnb in Dublin near Trinity

Brought my parents to Dublin's Guinness Factory! I think this might be their favourite attraction in Ireland!! My first experience: here

River Liffey flowing through central Dublin

We had authentic Irish pub food in one of the pubs in Dublin. Finally, dad tried the Guinness beef stew!! Not as great as the one I tried in Kerry, but still acceptable~

Our flight from Dublin to London was an early flight. However, there were some hiccups in between. We couldn't find a parking slot at the airport, and dad took some time. Eventually we found a lot, but i think dad accidentally scratched the back of the car.. :S 

We were late, but thankfully, the flight was delayed and we was able to rush to the gate on time!!! 

Met up with J & checked into our hotel - Travelodge City Centre

Also met up with my aunt & cousins who are based in London. Finally, my parents get to try Gold Mine!! The best duck in London for me! 

Back at Dozo for Japanese food hehe

Trying Shack Shake for the first time~

Dishoom - really love this Indian fusion!! Would love to visit and try the other dishes in the future

Met up with my ex-housemate in Cork, Claire~ We had a good time reminiscing our Cork days and had Thai food for dinner.

Celebrated J and my first year anniversary at Clos Maggiore, contemporary French cuisine and apparently the prettiest restaurant in London. To be honest, I was quite upset because we couldn't sit at the main dining hall and we didn't get a good picture xD
I was such a child!! We argued a bit on that night, but to me, it's good to have small arguments in a relationship because that's how you learn about each other. What's more important is learning from the experience, getting to know each other better and trying harder. 

After dinner, we also watched Book of Mormon - my first time & J's 2nd time. It was great!! Thank you J for our date.
I miss watching musical plays. While we were dating, my parents went for a date to watch Mamma Mia as well~ 
We headed to Munich for our 14 days Eastern Europe tour after London. It was a short but fruitful trip in London.

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