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giants and their egos

Happy Tuesday! Welcome back! Are you taking time to check-in with yourself and give yourself the care, love, and attention you need? If not, it’s perfectly okay to set aside time for yourself to do whatever you want/need to do during ‘me time.’ Maybe it’s yoga, meditation, running, reading, tending to a pallet garden you built, sewing some pillowcases for your home decor, making a dress to match your homemade mask, or even playing animal crossing with family and friends. Whatever you want to do during your assigned ‘me time,’ make sure you’re doing it and giving yourself a break.

If you didn’t get a chance to read yesterday’s post - “afraid of heights?” - you can click here to read all about the fun I had visiting the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge with several friends while living in Ireland! Also, if you didn’t get the chance to cast your free daily vote for me to be the next #MaximCoverGirl, you can click here to vote or click here to read about why it’s important to me (and then vote!). You can vote once every twenty-four hours for free, and I am so grateful for your support! Voting for the Quarter-Finals round ends THIS THURSDAY July 16th, so I’d appreciate any and all support I can get to make my way to first before the 16th! Thank you for everything so far!! If you’re all caught up on the adventures thus far and Maxim Cover Girl voting, then sit tight, strap in, buckle up - whatever you choose! Let’s take a hop, a skip, and a jump over to the Giant’s Causeway!

Another favorite place I got to see a few times while I lived in Ireland was the Giant’s Causeway. The Giant’s Causeway is an area on the coast of Northern Ireland about 3 miles northeast of the town of Bushmills (for all you whiskey fans out there.... though I'm more of a Jameson or a Writer's Tears girl, myself). It is both a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as a national nature reserve of Northern Ireland, and is made up of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns. These columns look like little interlocking hexagons strewn across the land and into the sea, the product of an ancient volcanic eruption (the majority of columns are six-sided, though some have anywhere from 4-8 sides). Although all my trips to the Giant’s Causeway involved entering via the visitor’s centre (again, your girl loves her audio guides), you can access it for free without entering through the visitor’s centre.

So why is it named the Giant’s Causeway? This is where we get to chat about one of my favorite things: Irish Folklore. Please attempt the next one-and-a-half paragraphs in your best Irish accent (because you know I did while writing). Legend has it that one day the Irish giant Fionn mac Cumhaill (Finn MacCool), grew angry when he heard that a Scottish giant named Benandonner was mocking his fighting ability. He threw a rock across the Irish Sea to Scotland, attaching a note to challenge Benandonner to a fight. The Scottish giant quickly threw back a rock with his own message tied onto it, stating that he would not take up the challenge because he couldn’t swim to reach Ireland. Finn swore not to let the Scottish giant off so easily and responded by tearing down the great pieces of volcanic rock that lay near the coast and standing them upright, making them into pillars that formed a Causeway stretching from Ireland to Scotland, hence the name Giant’s Causeway. Benandonner now had no excuse but to come to Finn mac Cumhaill’s house.

When Finn mac Cumhaill saw him, coming, however, he had underestimated the size of the Scottish giant and devised a plan. He dressed himself up like a baby so that when Benandonner came looking for him, he could sneak attack. Finn mac Cumhaill’s wife went along with the charade, telling Benandonner that her husband was out but would be back shortly while she pretended to rock the baby, and just as Benandonner was ready to leave, Finn mac Cumhaill bit his hand and chased him back to Scotland, flinging large mounds of the earth at him. One of the large holes he created then filled with water and became Lough Neagh in Northern Ireland (just outside Belfast), and another large lump of earth that he threw that missed Benandonner, fell into the Irish Sea, and is now known as the Isle of Man. The remaining hexagonal columns of the Giant’s Causeway are all that remain after the near-fight between Benandonner and Fionn mac Cumhaill.

Do you have any favorite folk tales you like to revisit that have been passed down from your ancestors? Let me know! Subscribe in the e-mail submission box below and reach out, follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and reach out to me on the “contact” page. I’m so happy you're here and that I’ve been receiving a lot of really incredible stories, questions, and feedback from a community all over the globe! Other people’s stories that I’ve gotten to read via e-mail, text, tweet, DM, etc. recently bring me such smiles, and I am so grateful for all of it! I hope I get to hear all about whatever stories you’ve been thinking about as we’ve been on this virtual journey together! Also, I've said it before and I'll say it again, if you have any restaurants/eateries/pubs/coffee shops/ice cream joints/theatres/lookout spots you would recommend in other countries or even in your current home town or city, I'm absolutely 100% all ears!! I couldn’t do this without you! So THANK YOU! From the bottom of my heart, truly, thank you.

And please, if you have 10 seconds to spare, I would really appreciate your daily vote for me to be the next Maxim Cover Girl 2020. Click here to vote! Voting for the Quarter-Finals is now live and continues everyday until THIS THURSDAY July 16th! The race is close, and I need to finish first in order to advance, so I would really appreciate your help and support as I continue to try and become the next #MaximCoverGirl by moving ahead into round 7/the Semi-Finals of the competition! Thank you for all your support! I wouldn’t have made it this far without you! Click here or on the photo above to vote!



P.S. - Enjoy a few more photos from Giant's Causeway!

P.P.S. - If you want to catch up from the beginning on this series of travel adventures, here's a cheat sheet to the posts (in order in which they were published):

1. Won't you join me?

2. grateful for starbucks and sandymount strand

3. Once Upon a December in the National Gallery

4. plant a smooch for that gift of gab

5. may the 4th be with you: Dingle style

6. cinco de mayo: the best Mexican food in Dublin

7. pizza in roma

8. mussolini’s window and the philosophers’ metro stop

9. father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife

10. it's the vatican, not the vatican't

11. spoiler alert: i did not lose my hand

12. more pizza and gelato and Neptune, oh my

13. craft beer, romper season, and volcano magic

14. bus singalongs and the okey dokey karaoke origin story

15. the beginning of the journey to the land of outlander

16. the boy who lived and the musical rapper

17. oh i just can't wait to be kingggg

18. fudge and haggis, quite the dynamic duo

19. the banshee labyrinth... or, my first time trying buckfast

20. the world's most magical toilet

21. gwyneth paltrow's (improv) sliding doors

22. scottish sombreros and jam, thank you

23. bob seger, a cèilidh, and arthur's seat

24. the next maxim cover girl!! 25. you can vote now!!

26. kindness at… the airport??

27. conversations with strangers and #basic meals

28. aren't gas stations amazing?!

29. not just mac's... supermac's

30. American vs. European Cell Phone Providers

31. brown bread ice cream

32. Black Lives Matter

33. technology and theatre

34. a love of Dublin pizza: Manifesto

35. a love of Dublin pizza: Dublin Pizza Company

36. a love of Dublin pizza: with my dad

37. Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness

38. thank you! round 2!

39. a love of Dublin pizza: and every other pizza

40. ahh-oooooh werewolves of london

41. a special london edition nerd alert

42. defying gravity is a WICKED good time

43. that wanker Van Morrison

44. The Cursed Child at the Palace Theatre

45. LA girls love London green juice

46. Super Bowl LII Champs at Wembley

47. champagne fizz and fruity cocktails

48. How-to: DIY Pallet Garden

49. dublin tattoo magic

50. juneteenth

51. thank you! Maxim round 4!

52. dublin bog bodies

53. dún laoghaire ice cream

54. local celeb sighting

55. 13.1 in Dublin

56. thank you! Maxim round 5!

57. every girl likes a bad boy

58. poolbeg lighthouse

59. conflict, bias, and propaganda in belfast

60. bow to your lord mayor


62. Maxim Cover Girl Quarter-Finals!

63. gulliver's travels in belfast

64. all aboard the HMS Caroline

65. all aboard the RMS Titanic

66. you know nothing, jon snow

67. cave-born shadow babies

68. afraid of heights?

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