Jim... I didn't see any pub at the causeway being built, there was just the old hotel there, and the national trust buildings on the land. Still fairly unspoilt as far as I can see. What was best was that there were not many people there at all, most people being sensible and staying in during the cold. The waves were huge and it was a wee bit nippy but beautiful. Didn't walk around all the walk as had the wrong shoes on for that (last minute, traveling light meant only one pair o shoes!).
Saw the area where the Carrick a rede rope bridge should be and I reckon they should leave it up during the winter - would be even more interesting then!
The sessions were great, the first one we went to was in Cushendall, a tiny small back room with roasting fire in, musicians crammed into the small off room, and people lined up against the corridors sitting on benches listening. Stayed with a lovely couple that night. Swapped a couple of tunes and I sang them a Welsh song - but have to admit I made up the last few verses as I forgot the lyrics - Hem hem... :) But I think I got away with it!
Back in the Belfast session in The John Hewitt bar there were about 5 flute players, one piano accordion, one guitar, one whistle, one button box, two bodhrans. THe lads there were very welcoming, played so many tunes I can't name them all. We played them some of our sets that we had put together and they did likewise. Sat and talked about a couple of tunes we'd got from a Kerry man and they had never heard them played that fast before.
Guinness flowed very freely, but in my case I was on the Bulmers (LOVELY MAD APPLES) so for me that flowed far far too freely indeed. And 3 pints of cider lately I was very merry and being guided out of that pub, on to another session.
The second session was in the Hercules bar, this time more musicians around my age, and all very welcoming too. One of the lads from the other bar had taken us around to introduce us to the company there, which was lovely of him. I sang two songs there I'd learnt from a Fermanagh singer last year - The Girl with the Bonny brown hair - and then The Noblemans Wedding. ONce again MORE drinks flowed though this time I struggled with a half pint of cider - I had a flight to catch home some time on the Sunday and couldn't stand hangover AND flying.
We rolled out of that bar at some point on the Sat eve - or was it Sunday I can't remember. My friend managed to pack me back into the car and off we went home. Me with my silly inane 'oh look I'm drunk again grin'.
Yes the Glens of Antrim are fantastic, so is the coastline, and I agree probably best left uncommercialised. Can't wait to go back, and with air flights so cheap over to Belfast from home (£35 return) I don't suppose it will be too far away.
OH well, back to the real world!