Author Archives: bretbosma

More on Cork City

We are back in Oregon and mostly settled back in to our old lives.

Looking through the Ireland blog, I realized we talked a lot about the places we traveled but not so much about Cork City where we lived. We really liked Cork City and I wanted to post a few pictures from there.

St. Fin Barre’s cathedral was directly across the street from where we lived and every day when I left the house I was in awe of this spectacular building.



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One of our favourite places was the English Market. It is essentially a farmers market with a much larger emphasis on red meat, poultry, and fish than the farmers markets in the US. They also do have lots of local and not so local fruits and veggies. It might not be as great as it once was, but it is a place where you can still interact with your local butcher, talk to a local farmer, and chat with a local fishmonger.




The food in Cork city was pretty good and we had a lot of spots we really liked. Electric, Fenns Quay, and Market Lane to name a few. However, I am slightly embarrassed to say that our favorite restaurant in town was probably a Mexican place called Cafe Mexicana. I think it was a combination of the margaritas:
and the mascot:
that made it our goto date night. The food was OK, but the service was great and we liked the ambiance of the place.

And finally breakfast. Pretty much anywhere in Ireland you can get a variation of the full Irish which is bound to be pretty good. Most of the best full Irish breakfasts we had were in B&B’s. My personal favorite in Cork City was at a place named Clancy’s. They definitely didn’t have the best service or ambiance but they had the most comprehensive and enjoyable full Irish breakfast in Cork.

Well, that is all from me from this blog. Stay tuned for our Cork pub review which Emily should post soon. Thanks to all of you that have been following along our adventure. All the great feedback we got helped inspire us to keep it going. Our plan is to archive the Ireland blog and start a fresh, probably with a lot of puppy pictures. The url should stay the same so if you are following along you shouldn’t need to do anything. Thanks again for following and hope to talk to you all soon.

Connemara and Mayo

For our final trip in Ireland we took a long weekend and went to county Connemara and county Mayo.  We both found Connemara absolutely stunning.  Turns out it is in competition with some of our favorite places in Ireland, including the Beara peninsula and Donegal.


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Our favorite beer in Ireland, the RUSTBUCKET Rye Ale!DSC_0044 DSC_0058

Blacksod Lighthouse – Gave the weather forecast for D-Day 1944. A friend of ours used to live in it.


This is a pretty special rock circle in that it multiplies one when you are in it!


Plymouth, UK

The major project for my research this year was two weeks of wave basin testing at the Plymouth University COAST research facility.  Since the models I was using were pretty big, I rented a van and drove them to the UK.  I went from Dublin to Holyhead on the way there and Pembroke to Roslaire on the way back.  This allowed me to drive through Wales both ways which was amazing.

I was staying on the 8th floor of a hotel for the two weeks I was there and had pretty nice views of the harbor and an abandon church.

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Emily joined me at the end of the first week and we went to Cornwall for the weekend and stayed in Penzance.  This was a great place to stay and explore the southwest peninsula.  Our first stop was the Minack theatre and the beach next to it.  Both were spectacular:


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Then it was on to Lands End and Sennen Cove for some more great views

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We then stopped at St. Ives which was a very nice touristy town with lots of art galleries and a couple of very nice beaches and a harbour.

The next morning we took a walk from Penzance to St Michael’s Mount which was also very striking.  We happened to be there at low tide and was able to walk out to the island via the causeway.

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During the second week, our friend Debbie, came and hung out in Plymouth with us and then joined us for our journey back to Ireland.  We traveled across Wales over a couple of days and saw some great sights.



We caught the ferry in Pembroke, which is a great little town with an amazing castle.  They were having an arts and crafts fair so admission was free.

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The International Network on Offshore Renewable Energy (INORE) and International Conference on Ocean Engineering (ICOE) conferences sent me to Halifax Nova Scotia in early November.  Pretty intense week of conferences but got to have some fun as well.

Halifax waterfront:


INORE symposium poster session:


Halifax Mooseheads Hockey:


Wave sculpture on waterfront:


INORE group cape split hike:


INORE Curling game:


ICOE poster presentation:


Oh, and a lot of boring important work stuff I didn’t take pictures of…


Our first stop in France was the city of Lyon.  I personally really liked this city, especially the old town part.

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Next we went to the town of Chablis.  This is a famous wine region where we ate a lot of good food and sampled a bit of wine.

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Then it was off to Paris, which really has so much to see.


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In the following picture the bridge is covered in padlocks.  We saw at least two bridges like this.  An incredible number of locks.  One of the bridges they were stopping people from adding locks because the structural integrity of the bridge was being compromised.DSC_0523

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Dinner spot complete with entertainment!


So, we have an album cover.  Now all we need is a band name and some talent.



Amsterdam and Switzerland


Our recent European tour started off in Amsterdam.  I absolutely loved Amsterdam.  Any city that has approximately 600,000 bicycles is probably going to rank high with me.

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The highlight was probably the canal boat tour which was a great way to see the city.


We met our friends James and Diana there and had a great time.



Then we were off to Geneva, Switzerland where we had a great time hanging with Cinda, Danny, and company.  Thanks for the great hospitality!


Here is all of us on the longest bench in Europe


Giant games of chess and great architecture

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We climbed to the top of the cathedral for some spectacular views.

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Lots of great food and wine of course

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It was sad to leave, but we were off to Lausanne, Switzerland next.  More great cathedrals and stunning architecture.

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Catch up

We have been getting back to our “normal” Irish lives lately with no guests in town.  Mostly sticking closer to town and enjoying our time here.  Last weekend we rode our bikes to Cobh for a blues music festival.  We took the ferry over.


There was a pretty great band out in the gazebo.




We had a very nice dinner there after the music and then had a nice ride home with a great sunset on the harbor.


This weekend we started off by going to the Cork City Football game.  It was a close game and we ended up winning 2-1.  Near the end of the game our goalie saved a penalty kick which was about to happen in this photo.  It was great!


Saturday we got up and headed the round about way (~35mi) for Kinsale on our bikes


It was a nice day and we picked a pretty scenic route including Roberts Cove.



At the next beach a guy just gave us two tall boys because we were on our bikes.  He had a case of them and was very persistent.  We enjoyed them at the end of the ride.


We stayed the night in Kinsale, watched the all Ireland hurling replay final, and a Tottenham Hotspur game, had a great dinner and called it an early night.  This morning we wandered around town and took some arty photos then rode the 16 miles back to Cork.

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All in all, the perfect weekend…

Sugarloaf and the Beara Peninsula

This past weekend Emily and I took off with some folks from work to the Beara Peninsula for a hike on Sugarloaf mountain, or Gabhal Mhór, meaning “big fork”.  Somewhere on the hike Emily proclaimed the Beara her favourite peninsula.





It was a great hike, and most of us made it to the top for a group shot


There were spectacular views, we had great weather, and of course, lots of sheep.



We then stayed the night at Katie’s parents house which was absolutely stunning



The place is in a small secluded bay with mostly calm water and again we had great weather on Sunday.DSC_0134

There was lots to do and some of the activities included kayaking, paddle boarding, rock climbing, watching hurling, guitar playing, badmitten, knitting, book reading…



A big thanks to Katie and her parents for letting us stay there and experience such a great place!


Tracy and Ramona Come to Ireland

The Beach Bar outside of Sligo.
View of the sunrise from The Beach Bar

Cemetery on Boa island

The Silver Strand




A collection of pictures from the Slieve League area









Prehistoric artifact in Glencolumbkille.


A beach in Donegal


Glenveagh National Park

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Beach in Dunfanaghy


Inside the main passage tomb in Carrowmore


Castle in Kinvarra


The Burren area

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The Cliffs of Moher

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Cable car to Dursey island


An Ireland post is not complete with out a picture of a sheep.