Annual Weekend Away - Carlingford (Pics here)
Picturesque Carlingford was the base of operations for this year's annual weekend break. A foray was made across the border, where the mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea.
Many members were unable to make it for various reasons this year, but those who did had a very pleasant weekend indeed. Five of us were there both Friday and Saturday nights with the others arriving on Saturday.
Harry, Deirdre, Paul, Dominic and Peter enjoyed a lovely meal in one of the many local restaurants on Friday evening and followed it up with plenty of imbibed good cheer, chat and puzzle games from Harry's mind-bending books back at the house. Needless to say, the puzzle difficulty was directly proportional to the amount of alcohol consumed!! Eventually at least one person nodded his way into dreamland in the chair, snoring contentedly (no names mentioned).
A bright start on Saturday morning, despite the weather forecast, and we piled into Peter's "minibus" and headed north. We went through Newry, where we linked up with Pete Bedell and later stopped at the Spelga dam to take photos (between the showers and in very windy conditions). Our eventual destination was the Silent Valley in the Mourne mountains. We didn't know this was actually an enclosed park with a £4.50 ( e7.00 approx.) entrance fee. Luckily Pete Bedell (the epitome of charm) was first to the gate and explained that none of us had any sterling with us. They would not take euros and the kind gentleman let us all in free - excellent! The peace process has obviously worked well!!
Most of the day was spent here with plenty of photo opportunities to avail ourselves of: the dam and reservoir, sluice, ponds, flora and fauna, scenery and woodland. We finished with a round trip taking in Rostrevor and Warrenpoint on the way back.
By evening time we were joined by Vivienne and both Colettes and we hit the town again for the evening and another lovely meal in a different restaurant. There was plenty of lively banter and more of Harry's trick questions, one of which cost him a tenner when Paul figured it out. Another one almost had poor Harry paying the entire bill! We retireated to the house again for more refreshments and a bit of moonwatching and stargazing. There was talk of us going to hear the dawn chorus at 5 am, but in the end nobody did as we only crashed at about 4 o'clock!
Sunday morning was lovely and we spent it taking shots around Carlingford town. After a spot of lunch everyone wended their merry way home by various routes. Deirdre, Harry and I went via old Mellifont Abbey, which was a bit of a disappointment.
Some AVs and still shots of the weekend were shown in the club the folowing Thursday night and enjoyed by all.
Roll on next year - suggestions for the venue are always welcome.
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