Derry – August 21, 2012 – By Lancelot

We start the day at a ground Espresso bar.  Our purchases include a biggy size hot chocolate, some  chocolate croissants, bagels with cream cheese, and sizzling hot bacon (going to be fat…but happy).

We hit the road to Derry, where we park the car and walk to the Derry wall.

In 1613, a dozen rich grocers and tailors started to build the  Derry wall.  It was completed in 1619.  The English eventually occupied the city and changed the name to London Derry, but the Irish Catholics on the other side of the wall call it “Derry”.  This was the last great wall built in Ireland.  There have been many attacks on Derry, but no successful attacks.

The longest attack  was in 1688.  An army of 1,200 men, under Alexander MacDonnell, 3rd Earl of Antrim, was slowly organized (they set out on the week William of Orange landed in England). When they arrived on 7 December 1688 the gates were closed against them and the Siege of Derry began. In April 1689, King James came to the city and summoned it to surrender. The King was rebuffed and the siege lasted until the end of July with the arrival of a relief ship. The English built a memorial to the governor George walker the English commander of defense but in 1972 the IRA (Irish Republic Army) blew it sky high and now only a little portion of it remains. In 2005, the IRA announced the end of their  armed campaign. The English had a big watch tower on the wall covered  with cameras, armed machine guns, large spot lights and sound devices which was shut down in 2006. The tension  between the Irish and the English is still ongoing.

 There are lots of paint stains  on the wall because some nights the  Irish shoot paint balloons over the wall with big sling shots.

After Derry we embark on the Donegal driving loop in Ireland.  While on the loop we stop at Glenveagh . John George Adair purchased this valley in 1857.   Adair finished building a small castle in 1873.  Today the are is a national park.

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Adair furnished the castle with lots of expensive furniture.  He wanted the furniture to be used as he  said  there’s no need to buy stuff just to dust.  Adair also placed many bedrooms in the castle to welcome the rich celebrities who visited him in the summer.  The castle has many little rooms to hangout in and is right next to a big lake.

Our next stop in Derrybeg.  Upon arriving we find that Derrybeg is a one horse town with a small gas station, a small dock, a small pub, and a nice spot to park the car.  Perfect.

We go get some pub grub and I get to hold dad’s drink while he practices his photography skills.

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