By the time we left Dublin, we were tired, overwhelmed and grumpy. (Our dealings with Enterprise, during which they more or less gave us a smart car for three people and three pieces of luggage, furthered our state.) Then, it took us more than an hour to get out of the city due to the insane traffic, and our situation was exacerbated. Then, we drove more than three hours in rain and sleet and hail under a veil of darkness to check in very late to the Killarney Park Hotel, and all annoyance dissipated the moment we met the kind staff (whom we had phoned earlier to say we’d be late, to which they responded in a charming Irish brogue: “oh! We were wonderin’ about ya. Drive safe, ya hear? We’ll see ya when ya get here.”)
The Irish tie the Scottish for the most genuine and effervescent people I have ever met, anywhere. And I love hotels that employ all locals, because it only gives the place even more authenticity. By the time we checked out two days later, the staff was so chummy with us, even they were trying to marry my little sis off to an Irishman (something my mom and I still vow to do; we want Irish blood in this family!).
Even though it was midnight when we arrived, the general manager showed us to our room. She got a little flustered when she saw there were three of us—even though, unbeknown to us, they had already upgraded our room to a suite.
There was only a king bed and a couch and so much space we could never occupy it all, but she got worried that we needed more. My sister told her, “don’t worry, this if way more comfortable than what they usually let me sleep on!” (which is the floor … sorry, Kar).
But still, the next afternoon, we came back to find they’d brought her a rollaway nonetheless. Excellent service. Kari was so excited, she did a little dance (par for the course).
I mean, really, how can you not be in a good mood when my sister is around? It’s simply not possible.
Our bathroom wasn’t too shabby either: It had a TV in the tub, which meant the entire suite had a TV for each of us (not that we watched them, but still, it was cool).
When Kari and I got downstairs the first morning, we met Sheila, an 86 year old from Laguna Beach who travels like its her job. She comes to Killarney often, it seems, as everyone at the hotel knew her.
And obviously, Kari needed to dance again—but this time with Sheila.
Sheila was a doll, and she preached “gratitude and attitude,” which are going to be the words by which I live my life going forward. We thought about following her around Killarney, but decided it best to wait for my mom.
When mom got downstairs, we opted for breakfast in the hotel. They have the most fabulous spread, complete with juice shots, and a full menu, as well.
We wound up eating dinner at Killarney Park Hotel each night as well, because it’s just that good. And my immaturity sure shows when I snap pictures of typical Irish dishes such as the following:
Whatever, you would have done the same.
It took us all day to leave the hotel. The place was just so comfortable and cozy and chill—exactly what we needed after a less-than-relaxed time in Dublin—and on top of everything else, there was an indoor heated pool and two indoor and one outdoor hot tub.
Killarney was just what the doctor ordered at that point in our trip and made me realize my love for Ireland, after a day or two of the future of our relationship looking grim at best.