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20 wicklownews

Living

TUESDAY 8 SEPTEMBER 2009

TRAVEL

Home & Away with Robert Walshe ACCORDING to recent figures, participation in nudism is growing by 20 per cent annually. A recent poll by Cheapflights. co.uk also showed 10 per cent of its viewers would choose to leave their clothes behind on holiday. Exclusively Lindos, in association with Allazo Life Coaching Holidays, is running a Change your Life Programme on the sunshine island of Rhodes on September 23 for seven nights. Prices start from £350 per week including self-catering accommodation in village studios, all coaching sessions and events. www.exclusivelylindos. com. Ryanair said it will open 39 new routes to/from the Canary Islands this winter starting in October. The new routes will bring 2 million new passengers, create 2,000 new jobs and deliver a visitor spend of over €386m for the Islands. www.ryanair.com.

■ Coopershill

Weekend Hotspot Ireland’s Blue Book is a collection of Irish Country House Hotels, manor houses, castles and restaurants and the group’s style and sophistication never ceases to amaze me. Located throughout the o country these charming bou■ Coopershills Hill Slig tique properties are some of the most unique places to stay fittings and in Ireland. One of its members, large rain shower head. Guests Coopershill Country House, is meet for drinks in the drawing a small luxury hotel situated in room from 7.30pm before dinacres of beautiful countryside ner, set on the most beautiful in the heart of County Sligo. antique tables including the finThis Georgian mansion has est Irish crystal and bone laden been home to the O Hara fam- cutlery surrounded by portraits ily since 1774. Simon O Hara of the O Hara family on the dinhas taken over from his par- ing room walls. Chef Christine ents and continues a tradition changes the menu regularly that has welcomed many happy and fish features prominently visitors. The estate is a haven with all seasonal fruit and vegfor birds and wildlife and the etables coming from nearby fallow deer reared in the near gardens. The on-site facilities by farm are a favourite with all at Cooper shill include an allguests. The eight bedrooms re- weather tennis court, croquet flect great taste and high stand- lawn and snooker table. Guests ards in every detail. Our tiled can also enjoy live traditional bathroom had the most amaz- Irish music sessions in various ing Victorian roll-top freestand- pubs in the area. Coopershill ing bath complete with brass is a rarity, timelessly kept by a

Pet’s Corner...

devoted family for generations, and the “Lord of the manor “Simon is the most gracious host and his spaniel Alice captures the true friendliness of this gem in the north west of Ireland. www.irelandsbluebook.ie/ coopershill.

Weekly Best Buy Discover and explore some of the most beautiful sights of Italy including the historic city of Rome, the stunning vistas of Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast, and the fascinating pilgrimage site of San Giovanni Rotondo

and Benevento. A Rome and Sorrento seven-night escorted tour from September 30 is €999pp sharing including tax. www.joewalshtours.i Hyatt Resorts alshtours.ie. has announced the return of its “Three for Free” offer, where guests receive a free room night, a free room upgrade and complimentary full American breakfast for two daily at 18 participating Hyatt Resorts in North America from September through December 18. www.Hyatt3ForFree.co t3ForFree.com. Crystal Ski has launched its new Winter 2009/10 brochure with winter sports holidays to three continents, 9 countries and 89ski resorts. www. crystalski.ie European Waterways have some great offers on a number of their luxury ‘floating boutique hotel’ barge cruises, meaning prices start from just £1,550 per person for a six night cruise. Great deals are available on a number of departure dates between September and October. www.gobarging.co www.gobarging.com Your Golf Travel. com is rewarding golf break organisers by giving them their next trip for just £1.The fantastic low price includes an over-night stay and two rounds of golf and is available to anyone booking a trip for themselves and three or more friends .www.yourgolftravel.com. Cruise2’s latest deals offer the very best of the Caribbean and the northern tip of South America. Deals include nine night Western Caribbean Fly/Cruise from only €979 per person sharing, departing October 16, 12 night Panama Canal Fly/Cruise from only €999 per person sharing departing November 19 and December 10 www.cruise2.ie

Home and Away Extra EURO star, the provider of high-speed, carbon neutral rail journeys between the UK and the Continent, says it now offers fares from more than 200 towns and cities across Britain for high-speed rail travel to the continent. Travellers from as far a field as Aberdeen, Bangor and Penzance can now buy connecting fares for journeys through to Paris, Brussels and beyond. Royal Mansour, Marrakech will redefine the gold standard of luxury hotels when it opens its doors for the first time in December 2009. It will take exclusivity, luxury and privacy to a level not seen before, offering an extraordinary array of spacious, opulent riads in the heart of one of the world’s most exotic cities. The property is conveniently located within the medina and just 15 minutes from Marrakech Menara International Airport. The individual riads will all feature private courtyards, fountains, and plunge pools as well as the most luxurious Moroccan furnishings and Wi-fi, providing guests with the utmost comfort. www.royalmansour. ma Concorde Travel, today, launched their first dedicated Wedding brochure, featuring a comprehensive selection of wedding destinations and venues abroad. The 36-page brochure is packed with useful information and features hotels, selected restaurants in the popular destinations of Cyprus and Croatia, Montenegro, Bulgaria and Malta. If you missed the Beer festival at Earl’s Court in London this year, you still have the chance to enjoy the second biggest Oktoberfest in Germany from 19th September until 4th October ‘09. The Okotberfest features two large beer tents, numerous live perfomances, and an exciting amusement park with 160 rides at the festival to choose from – an experience not to be missed. A new Swansea to Cork Ferry is due to be re-established next spring. The connection ceased in 2006 but is set to resume from March 1, 2010. The 1,800passenger ferry Julia, which was recently refitted, is to serve the route under a new operating company called Fasten Line formed by a consortium of private investors following an online campaign. Dubai has announced a year-on-year increase in visitor figures for the second quarter of 2009.The emirate had 1,857,724 visitors from April to June, 4% up on the same period in 2008. The UK and Ireland together remains the largest source market, with 196,554 visitors during the period. Robert Walshe is a freelance contributor / broadcaster and is guest travel writer for River Media newspaper titles across the island of Ireland

with Kathleen Murray

with Kathleen Murray: Animal Behavioural Therapist

Tribute to Ben

THE space this week is dedicated to my little friend Ben that died this week. When a dog dies it is always a tragedy no matter what the reason was. During its time with you a dog becomes part of the daily routine, part of the family and part of your life. Sometimes you don’t realise it until it is gone. There are days when you think you made a mistake getting the dog, there are days you think you don’t know what

you would do without the dog but as every day passes the bond becomes stronger. You get to know each other better and after a time it all starts to blend into a relationship that is unique to each member of the family, even the ones that are not that fussed on the dog. When the dog dies there is a sense of loss just like any loss in your life. There is an empty space and there is grieving. Thoughts go through your head about

the dog and the times you had together, some are comforting, some are upsetting but no matter what you think you will miss the dog for a long time to come. There are people that don’t understand this because they don’t really like animals but at some point in their lives hopefully they will understand how much an animal can give to a relationship, or family, and the joy that it can bring each morning you get up. Like children, an animal can make you go through a whole range of emotions from love to anger to pity and frustration but that is all part of a relationship.

There is no love without pain. Dogs are always happy to see you, they can make you forget the dullness of some days. They can be a friend to a child, and children especially feel the loss and can carry it with them throughout their lives. Everyone knows someone that still remembers the dog they had when they were a child, and how they felt when it died. That is the reason why many people get a dog of their own when they become adults. They want that feeling of unconditional love, companionship and trust back in their lives again when they are away

from home. It is something they can relate to and know that they won’t be judged by it. They can be themselves around an animal. When the dog in your life dies it is good to mourn its passing but it is also good (when you’re ready) to look forward again, get out there and get yourself another dog. There are a lot of dogs that need a good, loving home. Ben was a big presence and he loved a bit of craic. He was a good natured and loving dog. He had a good and loving family to share that with so he was a lucky dog. Not every dog has that in its life.


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