We are complete again. Normal business shall resume shortly. Happy Camper :)
Enjoying the evening sun…. and, no, she doesn’t move to allow you to pass by :)
I am speaking of my brother, Seamus O’Farrell.
Last year as it was a significant birthday year for him, rather than party or luxuriate in a nice hotel…. he decided to challenge himself. He took on the cycle from Paris 2 Nice (yes, involves cycling practically the length of France), and in the process raised over €7,000 for Aware (a supporting light through depression).
Seamus is off again – being a glutton for punishment – he’s heading back to France in September to once again complete the Paris 2 Nice challenge. This time he is raising funds for Make A Wish Foundation. Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children living with life-threatening medical conditions, or as a friend of Seamus’ put it “If we can’t make the child’s life longer we can pack more life in”.
Back in the olden days I used to cycle a lot. I cycled to school, even cycled to work at one point. Then when that was no longer viable, I joined a cycle club and went on long cycles on a Sunday. When we moved here we thought we could cycle here, but it’s not really feasible – bad narrow and broken side roads, and crazy busy main roads. You’d be taking your life in your hands.
So in one sense I am envious of my brother, but also I’m in awe of him…. don’t think I’d have the stamina to undertake such a mammoth task.
I had a chat recently with Seamus about the whole experience.
Why you decided to take on such a mammoth task?
It’s been just over a year since we started out on the AirBnB road. It has been interesting. It has been fun. We’ve learnt lots along the way.
We’ve had people from all over the place …. from USA, Canada, Australia, UK, Ireland and Germany. My geography of both the USA and Canada is certainly improving!
We’ve met strangers who have left as friends. We’ve met other AirBnB hosts.
We’ve shared many stories, many bottles of wine and lots of food.
We worried initially about informing our US guests that our rooster was called ‘Obama’ – he’s a rather handsome rooster. We need not have worried…. they find it highly amusing :)
Our US guests do find it most unusual that we live on an ‘unnamed’ road (yes, folks that’s what it says on Google Maps!). Unfortunately, there is absolutely nothing I can do to rectify that.
There have been many discussions about the rain…. how do we know when it is going to rain????? We’ve explained that our forty shades of green is the result of our forty different types of rain. All guests arrive laden with rain coats, rain hats and umbrellas and are intrigued that I own none of the above!!!
We’ve had impromptu cookery lessons…. showing visitors how to make pancakes, poach eggs and make Irish soda bread.
We’ve had lots of enthusiastic volunteers to help with the pigs.
We’ve received the most beautiful gifts from guests.
We always knew being a B&B would involve work, and it does. Gosh, there’s an awful lot of housework. It is a constant round of cleaning. I have perhaps become a little obsessed with the weather and trying to get bedlinen and towels washed and dried, and keep floors washed and clean.
Would we recommend doing the AirBnb thing?
Overall, our answer would be yes.
- Doing it this way is definitely more secure – you have your guests verification before they arrive – and they too can check you out.
- Be prepared for some early morning starts….. we’ve not had too many of those thankfully.
- We offer the additional option of an evening meal which does I think add to the guests experience of Irish hospitality. It also requires organisation and planning in the kitchen.
- We’ve managed to entertain lactose intolerant, nut allergy folk and vegetarians. Managing to convert two of the vegetarians to meat eaters has to have been a highlight :)
- The various animals about the place seem to have taken to it too….. the dogs love all the attention and the pigs and hens have behaved mostly, so there’s been no mad dash to get them back to pens when we should be cooking dinner!
Have you used AirBnB? Someday we will get the chance to get away and will try it for sure :)
And, wow! Just had news that one of our B&B guests has bought a property 2 miles away following on from her stay with us. How exciting is that?
Another one from the archives… still without my lens :(
We’ve had a busy July of AirBnB visitors here at Oldfarm which has been wonderful and fun. Some have asked me to share some of our recipes with them.
So here’s the first sharing – this one is for Lauren.
When Lauren and Josh stayed with us the hens were on a bit of a ‘go slow’ so I had to think up a dessert that did not involve eggs. I hadn’t made this posset in years…. I think the original recipe came from an old book of my Mum’s.
- 450 ml cream
- 125 gr. caster sugar
- 1.5 lemons juiced.
Bring the cream and caster sugar slowly to the boil, stirring gently until sugar dissolves. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the lemon juice.
Allow to cool slightly before pouring into glasses. Leave to set in the fridge for a few hours.
A great ‘make ahead’ dessert, and really refreshing. This quantity made 5 portions in the glasses I was using.