Only one small hiccup the next day - received a message from my husband at home telling me the bank wanted to speak to me about a possible fraudulent transaction on my credit card. They wouldn't give him any details, so I had to call them. The item at issue was the €2.40 electronic toll fee which I had paid on-line. So my short trip on the tollway into Dublin ended up costing me around $30!
I arrived in Dublin about 6.30 pm on Sunday, finding my accommodation at Botanic View B&B in Glasnevin, without too much difficulty. This was a great location just north of the city, bus stop almost at the door and just 10 mins into O'Connell St. Also not too far to walk, about 25 mins, which I did on a couple of mornings. The area was also well-served with pubs, restaurants and take-away food outlets, so was very convenient for me as all within a few minutes walk.
My purpose in Dublin was to visit the National Library, National Archives and Church of Ireland library, looking for records relating to our family history.
Monday morning got off to a slow start due to difficulties with my Irish SIM card in my phone. After only a few days, I couldn't make any calls - apparently out of credit even though the card I had purchased was for unlimited calls for a month. After 2 hours of on-line chat help with O2, finally sorted - just needed to change a setting in my phone and I was back in touch with the world. I then set about establishing some contacts in Dublin.
First was a coffee date with Margaret Gallery, with whom I had been in email contact. Margaret and I have a mutual connection via the Stacpoole family. Additionally, her Kenny family succeeded the Pilkington family at Cragleigh in the mid-1820's, so we have some shared research interests. We met up at a little coffee shop not far from the National Library, and Margaret had also invited Paddy Waldron and Colin Keane. Colin is a 4th cousin of mine, a descendant of Francis Nathaniel Keane of Hermitage. He is very knowledgeable on all Keane family matters and has a large collection of family memorabilia.
The following day I had lunch at the National Library café with Tom Pilkington's cousin Gail. Gail is currently studying a genealogy course, and had offered me any help I needed negotiating the library and archives. Her connection to Tom is via his mothers family, while mine is through his fathers side.
In the evening I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Tim and Aine Haier. Tim is also a 4th cousin, or more correctly a half-4th cousin, if there is any such thing. His great-grandmother, "Old Susie" who features in Fred Pilkington's diaries and family letters, was a half-sister of my great grandfather.
Tim and Aine had lots of information to share about Kilbaha, Kiltrellig and the connection between the Haiers and the Pilkingtons. Tim has lots of memories of growing up in the area, where his dad ran the pub which was originally Susie's (c1867), and is now the Lighthouse Inn. He recalls playing in the stables at Kiltrellig and being sent up to Miss Annie with messages, telegrams etc. The Haier family purchased Kiltrellig after Aunt Annie died. It was a thoroughly enjoyable couple of hours spent with them.
Finished off the day in Hedigan's Brian Boru pub, just across the road from my B&B, enjoying a whiskey and some traditional Irish instrumental music.