Saturday April 15
My trip this year started out with a minor heart attack when I left my very expensive 1919 Gibson A4 mandolin on the sidewalk out side the Aer Lingus terminal at LAX in Los Angeles. My manager Chris had just dropped one of my fellow travelers, Eva, who had flown in the day before from Phoenix, and I at the airport and after hugs and good byes, I walked in to the check in only to receive a phone call and instantly panic realizing my mandolin was not with me. I rushed out and thre was Chris frantically trying or reach me...I thought what a possible nightmare start to the trip...all is well.
Everybody showed up, all fifteen who were flying with me, eight more were making their own way to Dublin from scrawl other different parts of the US. After a long but not too arduous flight, ten hours direct to Dublin everybody met up in Dublin Airport, we met our new driver Paul and off we went. We picked up my son Rory in the city, he had flown over days earlier and had retrieved my Martin guitar which I leave with one of my brothers in Dublin.
We drove south west for four hours to the beautiful town of Kenmare, Co. Kerry for the first three days of our tour and arrived about 7:30pm at our two side by side guest houses. Our principal guesthouse here is the Shelburne Lodge, built in the 1730's for Lord Shelburne who built the town of Kenmare to support his vast estates, he signed the Treaty of Paris ending the US British Revolutionary War and went on to become Prime Minister of England in the 1780's... I believe I have his Lordship's room, naturally....the house is extremely charming and took six years to completely restore by the present owners. Due to our number, several are staying at the equally lovely "The Lodge" next door.
We went up to the nearby Lansdowne Hotel to the the Poets's Bar for a lovely dinner at about 9pm. Rory and I both had incredible "locally raised" lamb shanks... We listened to a bit of traditional music and all retired for the evening.