After a day of sunshine, flowers and cheer, it was time for a bit of doom and gloom. We started off our second day in Belfast with a visit to the Victorian era prison on Crumlin Road. Until it closed in 1996, it housed political figures, suffragettes, even children, as well as the usual criminals.
The weather matched the mood and history of the place — dark and rainy. The highlight, if you could call it that, was the execution chamber where condemned prisoners were hanged. I’m not being sarcastic — seeing the condemned prisoners cells and the gallows was fascinating. I’m glad we made the visit. But it is sobering. I don’t remember if photos were allowed, but it seemed disrespectful to take photos of such a grisly place where so many men were executed (seventeen). The last execution was in 1961.
From there we wandered around in the afternoon going from one bar to another looking for traditional Irish music to satisfy Katherine’s jones for the music (I like it, but I’m not obsessive like Katherine). Not much luck finding anything in the afternoon or early evening — Friday is not the day for Irish music unless you want to hang around until late. We did kill some time at the movies downtown (we saw “Gone Girl” — very good) and then headed to the Dirty Onion (link to be added later) for a late session of traditional music. It was so loud — Friday night, young men, young women, you get the picture — so we left after about 30 minutes and headed back to our spacious accomodations at L’Acadamie in the Queens Quarter (I’ll add the link later).
to be continued…..