Wednesday, 10 July 2013

My family visits Northern Ireland






















You may have noticed a lack of updating the blog the past two weeks. It's because my family (see first picture) minus one brother arrived early on Thursday and left early yesterday. I kind of thought that I'd have some free time for blogging, even just short posts. Oh how naive I was... (Wanna hear something slightly ridiculous? When my family had been here for about ten days, I had 200 unread blog posts in my Bloglovin feed. And I haven't even added all the blogs I like on Bloglovin. Addiction?) Everytime I sat down with my laptop I got pulled into an interesting conversation or an exciting movie (or, as was the case on the second Sunday, Mamma Mia which is neither interesting nor exciting but somehow I watched it anyway). There is also the issue of writing a blog which is primarily read by a small group of people... Who are suddenly all with you. Anyway. The first few days we relaxed and went shopping around here as well as in Belfast. I got my graduation dress four days before my graduation which was not my plan at all but I was too indecisive for so long that eventually I ran out of all my online options. I ended up getting a white dress from Urban Outfitters that I'll be able to wear again, so I'm happy!

On Sunday we went to Steve's parents' caravan, without Steve because he's an adult and not yet on holiday, for a couple of day. The caravan is close to Enniskillen which is b e a u t i f u l (see the upper three pictures). We played several games of 20 Questions The Board Game and I won three times. Important to know. On Monday we went to the town of Enniskillen for a couple of hours. I found the most amazing midcentury-style cupboard and immediately texted Steve to tell him to measure a specific space in our front room. Unfortunately there was a misunderstanding and he claimed that there was not enough space when there actually is. I will have trouble forgiving him for this (although in reality I have no idea how it was supposed to fit in the trunk of our car anyway. I might have offered to carry it the 63 miles home). Oh cupboard... On Tuesday we drove home to buy last minute graduation-essentials (underwear and a ridiculously expensive BB cream) and on Wednesday it was time for my graduation!

As you can see I was kitted out in the proper graduation gown which was surprisingly fun to wear. Dumbledore-jokes were made by all present. The ceremony itself went surprisingly smooth although my particular moment on stage is in a blur because all I remember was staring at my vice-chancellor in a daze and for a very short moment thinking "he knows who I am..." At least I never tripped. Even though I didn't get tickets for Steve and my brother the helpful guy at the ticket office instructed them to just stand at the doors and sneak in when everyone else was seated. It worked. There was a minor complete disaster with my graduation meal and so we had to change venue the same day which was an experience I could have done without. However, the new venue which was Clenaghan's was absolutely amazing. For main course I had duck confit which is one of my favourite meals and I would recommend anyone to go there. (There's very few things on the menu but everything tastes so good.) All in all it was an amazing day and I got a bunch of gifts from mine and Steve's family.












The day after my graduation I woke up and felt like I really could have done with a day without plans. This was not possible as I had promised that my family and Steve's parents were going to the north coast of Northern Ireland. And I had to drive. Luckily, it turned out to be one of my favourite daytrips ever. We went to see Giant's Causeway (the first picture), the Carrick-a-rede rope bridge and then we went to Portrush. I found the rope bridge particularly entertaining. However, my mom didn't realise she was afraid of heights until she was half-way over the bridge (which spans about 30 metres above water). She ran of the bridge (see second picture) into safety where she realised that to get back to the mainland she was going to have to cross the bridge again. Poor mom. The last four days the beautiful weather arrived to Northern Ireland and we spent the rest of the time just lounging in the garden and having dinners with Steve's family. It was twelve great days and I hope they visit soon again.

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