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Belfast, Ireland

Belfast is the capital of Northern Ireland – part of the United Kingdom. Belfast has experienced a renaissance since the 1994 ceasefire promised an end to the decades-old ‘Troubles’ between the Catholics and Protestants.

Stretching along both sides of the River Lagan, the graceful city of Victorian and Edwardian buildings has become a cosmopolitan tourist destination. Once a major industrial center, Belfast is also a gateway to the rich, Irish countryside of Ulster, Antrim and Donegal.

The police cars were the most colorful of all that we have seen. We finally got a bit of sunshine but it wouldn't last for long. We began the hunt for the elusive shillelagh in earnest to no avail.

City hall.

The brown structure is a water fountain. On it is inscribed, "If you are thirsty drink to your fullest. Wait a couple of hours and  you will be thirsty once again."

Deciding that finding a shillelagh would be a lost cause we went to the Botanical Gardens. The entrance into the gardens was interesting in that it had some colorful flower beds and a cast iron framed greenhouse. We made our way along a long pathway to the rose garden. What a disappointment. The roses looked like they were sick and had few leaves. Again, the weather was overcast and we got sprinkled on with rain a couple of times.

As it had began to rain, we got on a bus and made our way back to the ship. The wooden reclining statue we found to be interesting.

The next port was Greenock, Scotland about 20 miles from Glasgow. We didn’t bother to take the train to Glasgow because the weather was dreary and a bit rainy. We spent the day aboard ship and watched the movie Slum Dog Millionaire in the theater. That night and the next day we were at sea and enjoyed watching the rain from within the ship.

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Last modified:    April 2013