The Burren Report, by Joey Miller

One of Cromwell's soldiers once said of the Burren: "Not enough water to drown a man, not enough soil in which to bury him, and nothing to do in the evening". He was absolutely right; on one occasion, Oscar Nunan once suggested, as a form of evening entertainment, going to "the field". But, then again, we didn't go to the West of Clare for its rocking night life...

The trip istelf began on a sunny June morning, the ones seemingly reserved for the opening day of the leaving certificate. But, as the respective examinees took the long walk down to the Sports Hall for the Big Summer Quiz, 50 or so 5th formers piled into a pair of coaches. Many hours, and many, many episodes of Family Guy later, and we had arrived.

The next few days have now merged into a limestone-blur of mountains, grikes, and cringingly bad jokes (courtesy, as ever, of Mr. Jones). For many, the highlight of the trip came in the form of a 3-mountain hike. I say "for many", and not "for all" because for some people the trip did not go to plan - namely a gaggle of girls who, having taken a wrong turn somewhere along the way, found themselves, bemused if pleasantly surprised, outside Father Ted's house. Go on, go on, go on....

Fanore Beach was another success, the waves more than making up for the frigid water. Our opening day walk up a hill called "Black Head" was also a popular feature of the trip... God, we even managed to fit in some time to look at a few rocks and flowers...

The hotel was surprisingly nice. Any initial fears of traditional trip accomodations were put away on arival. En suite bathrooms, goats cheese tart for dinner, and ITV4 on the box were all readily welcomed. Never mind the fact that double-beds had to be shared; who cares when "Tarrant on TV" is just a few clicks away?! (Followed, I might add, by the spectacular "Worlds Most Shocking Police Videos" - Hijack special!)

Our last day saw us visit a cave, a church, a ring fort, a portal dolmen, a "Birds of Prey" exhibition, and a McDonalds: a wide array of largely non-Biology-related events that ensured that, despite leaving the hotel at 11am, we did not arrive back at SCC until 7pm. Spending such a length of time in a coach is not adviseable under any circumstances, not least when the double-glazing acts like a magnifying glass, quietly but severley melting everyone inside. Overdosing on the marmite-esque Family Guy is also not encouraged.

Nonetheless, the hellish journey home did little to spoil what had been an enjoyable trip. Thanks to Mr. Jackson, Dr. Stone, Ms. Hennessy, and Mr. Humphrey "I'll keep trying until somebody laughs" Jones.


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