HUMOUR: Pickled Onions

Some while back Noizy had a photo of an Irish pub in Maine in his blog on 360 and the name of the establishment was:

The Pickled Onion!

My comment was this:

HEEEH!! lol

I think that the onion is not the only one that is getting pickled in that establishment!!

Tis for now, Rii

European Commission announced that the list of products and services to which Regional Indications apply will be updated on January 1st 2008. New items on the list will be Irish pubs (Ireland), saltibarsciai (Lithuania), Koksksu (Malta), Kiselo mljak (Bulgaria)

“Also the protection of the Geographical Indication of Irish pubs is an important step towards including cultural expressions in the GI Regime. Geographical Indications have proven themselves to be very effective in protecting products ranging from Cheese to Wine and Sausages. We hope to be equally effective in protection authentic European cultural expressions. Next year we hope to include such diverse cultural phenomena as the Sirtaki dances from Greece, Latvian folk stories known as Dainas and Finnish smoke saunas, known as Savusaunas.” (Jean-Claude Hulot, Chairman of the Committee for Regional Indications)

A geographical indication (such as “Roquefort”) testifies to the link between a given quality, reputation or other characteristic of a product, a service or a cultural expression and its geographical origin. There are approximately 700 GIs registered under the Regulation today.

Travelogue from Dublin: Coffee Shops

Village Square

It’s your very own tour guide Barbie here again doing her tour in the Emerald Isle – and yes, me cheeks are killing me with all that smiling…!! This time in the ‘logue it’s going to be about the cafes in the locale where I am staying at the moment and also of the cafes that I like elsewhere in this country. Here is a very handy link to touristing in  Ireland and in Dublin, in particular.

My very favourite cafe, Coolbeans, is in Bray where I just step in and really don’t have to have say a word and the things are served to me with speed and the accuracy of the pro. Just marvellous. I hadn’t been in there for two whole years and the staff remembered me name and all as I walked in there the other day as if I had never ever been away at all. Excellent.

There are some other favourite haunts of mine as well such as the Cafe an Seine – yes, it’s very O’ La La, French – which is situated right in the centre of Dublin on the Dawson Street. The pastries are outstanding and the coffee ab fab and the ambience – well, let’s say, very turn of the century as in the 19th century Paris. Another great French place is the cafe called, Cafe des Amis at the Alliance Francaise on the Kildare Street where the food, the pastries, the coffee and the prices are first class. I highly recommend both of these places.

In Dun Laoghaire one of my favourite places for cafes is Costas – a new place in the Pavillion in the centre of the town which is located upstairs of the most marvellous bookstore called Hughes & Hughes. Go n stuff your gullet in there at your leisure and enjoy the fab view! Then there is Walters, where the cappuccino is just right and the food in general extremely good and delicious. The GTI cafe cum restaurant on the George’s Street, that is the main street in Dun Laoghaire, is always great and the service is both humorous and precise. Here is a link to Dun Laoghaire tourism online site.

The Cafe Javas are these days in nearly ‘every’ place around Dublin, but in my mind the best of the lot is the one in the corner at the lower end of the Leeson Street in Dublin. They are consistently fab and better somehow than the other branches for whatever reason. The Bewleys’ Cafes were an institution but as the institutions go, they often lose their momentum and this is what has happened to them as well in my mind. Shame.

Tis for now from your guide in the Emerald Isle. The tour continues… Riihele xx.

The photograph is the village square in Enniskerry, County Wicklow taken by me.

Travelogue to Dublin

“In Dublin’s fair city, where girls are so pretty,/I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone, /

As she wheeled her wheelbarrow through streets broad and narrow, /Crying, Cockles and mussels! alive, alive, oh!”

Source: Think

The Irish are quick as a flash in inventing brilliant nicknames to anything and everything. There is a statue on a street in Dublin called ‘The Molly Malone’ of the famous ballad. Her nickname is ‘The Tart with the Cart’ – because the poor girl has a rather too low-cut outfit on her! She is the one with the ‘cockles and mussels…’ Here is an interactive map of Dublin.

The best or the easiest thing in my mind to do when one is for the first time in Dublin is to take your pick of the tours that do the trotting for you while you can take in the various sights and then go back later on to the ones that you want to have a closer look into. This site in the link is called, ‘Dublin Uncovered’, and there are great ideas and tips for taking tours and it has lots of useful information on the sights, sounds and so on on Dublin – that is the Visit Dublin site – and the surrounding satellite towns. And here is the NASA space view over Dublin and over my favourite mountains, The Wicklow Mountains. Wikipedia information for a visitor to Dublin is in this link.

Dublin was founded by the Norman Vikings in 988 AD – I know, my lot as I have also Swedish roots – I used to say to them in Ireland while living there for 23-years that ‘ you lot would be still living in the huts in the countryside if we had not come to organize and to urbanize you into the cities and towns.’ To show what I mean I put this informative link to the history of the city of Dublin. The main tourist place to see the Viking past is in the Dublinia and The Medieval Viking World located in the Christ Church Cathedral. The other large cathedral, St. Patrick’s, is right besides the Christ Church.

The Book of Kells is in the Library of the Trinity College – founded in 1592 by the Elisabeth I. So it’s been there for a while, one can safely say! There are many other museums in Dublin and here is the main index where they are listed in a clear way for your perusal; like The Dublin Writers Museum on the Parnell Square right at the city centre or The National Museum of Decorative Arts & History in the Collins Barracks which is also in the city centre so there is no need to go on long treks to any direction.

Here is a handy guide to accommodation in Dublin hotels, also the whole of Ireland is there through the further links, and here is another very useful link to the hostels, B&B’s, self catering et cetera. I wrote about eating out in here. Also, the Kilkenny Design store on Nassau Street is a fabulous place to shop for souvenirs and have a delicious meal to boot.

Are you getting parched? Well, no panic. Guinness is everywhere at its best, of course, being the city of the brew in question. There’s even a museum to do with the same at the St.James’ Gate that again is situated right at the compact city centre of Dublin.

Then there are a few of my own favourites haunts such as the Cafe an Seine – yes, it’s very French – which is situated right in the centre of Dublin on Dawson Street. The pastries are outstanding and the coffee ab fab and the ambience very turn of the century Paris. Another great French place is the cafe called, Cafe des Amis at the Alliance Francaise.

The Westbury Hotel off the Grafton Street, where one can sit in peace and ponder what is and what will be in the most elegant surroundings. It was there that we, as in the daughters and I used to wait for the traffic jams to clear. It was also in the Westbury that I used to meet my friends who lived in the other parts of Dublin as it was the handiest for all of us for a platter & a natter! As the ladies are in wont of doing worldover. The hotel is very posh but one need not spend a fortune there as you can just have a pint or a glass of good wine for about 4-5 euros in the lap of luxury.

BON VOYAGE to Dublin – Enjoy Your Tour today!

Says, Your Guide Riihele xx.


Here is another ab fab compiled guide to visiting Dublin with masses of great links.


The Balancing Act ~ Being Everything 2 Everybody

Balancing Act

Picture off the net, makeover on the same by Riihele.

As a mother, a nurse, a cook, a cleaning lady, a wife ( now an ex), a friend, a neighbour, a sister, an employer, an employee, a citizen, et cetera, one is forced to learn fast the know-all of an acrobat and to become a master trapeze artist and a multifaceted expert at the Balancing Act!

It takes a huge amount of skill and stamina to be to able to be everything to everyone in one’s life. And I would say that one can do it – that is: this all in all – for only a short space of time because in the long run one’s own health will begin to pack in.

I went grossly underweight myself because of the over-the-top demands that were bombarded on me from all directions. I ate well but it was not sticking on me bones no matter what. I even had a daily Guinness to gain weight for months on end, but to no avail except that I became very fond of the black stuff!

Would you believe that, in the times not so long past, the Pint of Plain aka Guinness was on the house – for free – for the new mothers in the hospital in Ireland called the Rotunda! Yep twas. No wonder that the people are/ were so partial to the brew when it was dished to them in the mother’s milk as well. Guaranteed customers from the birth. Well, the St.James’s Gate – the home of Guinness – isn’t that far physically located from the Rotunda. Here is the story of the Pint of Plain and here is another site to read on the same.

By the time I went to the Rotunda Hospital to have my daughters the custom of the free brew was no longer part of the daily routine for the new mums. Rotunda – the painting in this link shows the shape of the building – is such an apt name for the maternity hospital as one goes in there rather rotund…!! It is also the oldest maternity hospital in the world, founded in 1745! It looked like they had not done much renevations since the year of building when I was there, anyway. The history of the Rotunda is most interesting, indeed. Have a read.

THINK, that in the wide world there is a mother dying every few seconds – the Unicef article of 2003 states that 1400 mothers die every day because of the complications of the pregnancy and the birth.Here is what the UNICEF says about it all. It is nigh impossible to fathom for us in the west and in the parts of the world where the antenatal and the postnatal care are taken for granted.

That to me is the Pandemic Catastrophy of giant proportions and not the other thing at the moment that is marketed for us as such worldwide.

How are You Balancing the Act in your own life?

Tis for now until the next posting. Riihele xx.


The poor thing on the trapeze looks rather harassed and is about to fall.