Walt's Look Around: County Cork, Ireland - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Walt's Look Around: County Cork, Ireland

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Just as you wouldn't go to Paris and not at least see the Eiffel Tower, or San Francisco and not see the Golden Gate, or Hawaii and not see Diamond Head, then you shouldn't come to Ireland and not kiss the Blarney Stone. Realizing you don't kiss the Golden Gate, but whatever.

But hey, don't look for the Blarney Stone down here where it's convenient. The Blarney Stone is at the tip-top of Blarney Castle in County Cork. And even then it's not sitting out in the middle of the floor where it's easy to get to. No, you have to lay on your back and lean over the side of the castle, 90 feet above ground, with someone holding on to you, lean WAY back and THEN pucker up and give it a smooch.

Ah! But the rewards are numerous! Your tongue will be lubricated as if by Irish whiskey while still stone cold sober, and you will be given the ability to convincingly tell a bald face lie. THAT could come in handy for me while filling in on weather.

 Blarney Castle was built in 1446 and it was the third castle on this site. In the 11th century a wooden building was erected here. Then in the 1200s it was replaced by a stone structure, which was razed in the 1400s and used as the foundation for this castle. 

And as for kissing the Blarney Stone, that practice seems to be only a couple of hundred years old. And how and why it got started is lost back in time. And it used to be a lot harder than it is today. Because back then they held you by your feet upside down and lowered you into the hole in the rampart so you could get a smooch at it. Just a hunch, but sounds like it may have started when somebody lost a bet.

And just WHAT the stone is, is also a mystery. Well, geologically the Blarney stone is a slab of bluestone. But since it's benevolent powers were revealed, all sorts of stories have been contrived as to where it came from.

One says this is the rock Moses struck to get water in the desert. Another says it is the pillow of Jacob the night he wrestled with God.

Sounds like these theories were concocted by someone just after they kissed the Blarney Stone and received their gift of eloquence.

But I've kissed it. And I can check it off my list. Kissing the Blarney Stone was right up there along side climbing the Matterhorn. So I'm glad I got it over with. Oh, it was an either, or, by the way. That's one reason I am so relieved.

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