a preponderance of punctuation marks (reedrover) wrote,
a preponderance of punctuation marks

Castletownroche, Anne's Grove Gardens, and Castle Siege Day!!!

Friday was a relatively low-key day. We decided that today was the day to sleep until done. This meant that we didn’t get up and moving until nearly noon. That was fine, since the only plans for the day were to be social, explore Blackwater Castle tower itself, and to visit Anne’s Grove Gardens. The tower exploration was a ton of fun. On the first floor was a shrine to the fertility goddess S--- (forgot the name). Patrick told us later that the spiral stones on the second floor were done by an artistic type who just wanted to do it, and that there was no reason to take it down, so he didn’t. The stairs weren’t horrible, and the roof of the tower was plenty stable for us to go out and admire the view. Q_Goat and C. climbed all the way to the lookout at the very top.

Anne’s Grove Gardens are right outside of Castletownroche. The gardens are extensive and reputedly hold an impressive collection of rhododendrons. Unfortunately, this is not the season for rhodies to be in bloom, so we ended up skipping that entire section in our tour. We visited the walled garden, the river garden, and the rock garden. The vote among the various groups who went was that the map of the grounds was only vaguely helpful and that the lack of labeling in the gardens made them more of an atmospheric experience than a horticultural one. It was probably not worth the 7 euros per person to be there out of season, but it was a lovely walk for a quiet afternoon.

We went back to the castle for a very late lunch, and some reading and chores. After I mopped the kitchen floor, the general relaxation turned into a nap for me. I was woken from my nap by CK reappearing with a goblet of fresh-picked raspberries and the news that the Castle Siege was underway. This was a long-planned-for activity for the OTP group. We had Patrick’s permission to fire at the castle tower.) Whale_Girl and her gent built and brought an air-pressured rocket launcher and four little rockets to besiege the castle, or at least use the tower as a target. Someone else (Lost Boy?) brought a three-man sling shot and water balloons too. The evening was full of flying weapons, some of which managed to hit the tower. Patrick found an old arrow in his garage, which not only fired very well, but flew *over* the castle tower onto the back patio. Oops. We then had to widen our safety announcement to include everything *behind* the castle tower as well as to either side of it. The biggest of the Vilelings shot the highest water balloon (with help), and we all had a good time with the mayhem and threat of destruction. … From destruction to construction, we then played one last round of Ticket to Ride Europe, with CK beating out Q_Goat by only four points.
Tags: otp, travel

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