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Session at the Dying Cow

June 1, 2007
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Session at the Dying Cow

Originally uploaded by IrishFireside

corey says…Every once in a while an opportunity pops up that you simply cannot pass up. We were getting a bit road weary when we happened upon Haroldstown Country Farmhouse B&B.

When we asked our hostess Siobhan about some of the off-the-beaten-path sites in the area, she stood in the doorway and started listing a few prime destinations. Another voice could barely be heard from just behind the sitting room door whispering a few more for her to add.

She quickly relayed the suggestions from behind the door. They all sounded interesting, but none were as appealing as The Dying Cow. Just the name alone stopped us dead in our tracks.

“I’d say I wouldn’t even know how to begin to give you directions to that place.” The voice from behind the door wouldn’t let her give up that easily. After a few seconds she said, “Now, stop there. You come out and tell ‘em yeerself. I couldn’t find my way up there. You’re the one from these parts.”

She pushed the door aside and and a man peeked sheepishly around the corner. “This is my husband Larry.”

We each shook his hand and the only way he could describe the Dying Cow was “It’s like nothing else.”

“Do they have music?”

“I’d say they do…and stories…and jokes.”

“Is it a pub?”

“You can get yerself a pint there.”

“How far away?”

“Not far. I’ll have to call and see if there is a session on tonight. Ye see, it’s only on every other T’rsday. You boys get settled in yer room, and I’ll make a call.”

We headed up the stairs to our room…they had a family room so all three of shared. Although we were still tired from the travel and the session the night before, we were thrilled when Larry told us the session was on. He insisted on driving us there – he said we’d never find the place, but I have a feeling he was up for some good craic as well. We all climbed into Larry’s car, and it was up into the Wicklow Mountains.

The Session
The Dying Cow was situated at a crossroad. A dog, perched at the end of the drive, greeted us, and the little pub attached to a house was overflowing with people…ranging from teens to grandparents. The pub itself was quite small with the bar taking up a quarter of the room and the musicians…fiddle, flute, guitar, bodhrán, tin whistle…taking up another quarter.

The session was in full swing, and we managed to find a spot inside. After a few rounds of drinks, several of the locals were called on to do solos. There was a great mix of music…the teens did some contemporary songs, a woman from Tipperary did some 70s ballads, an older gentleman told jokes and stories, but it always came back to traditional music.

Thanks to Larry, Liam became known as the man from Tipp and was asked to sing, and Tony played a solo on the fiddle.

The session was still going when we left, but we knew we had a big day coming up, so we left when the bar stopped serving. All in all, the Dying Cow was one of those uniquely Irish experiences we just fell into…right place, right time or as my friends Bit and Michele say “fairy-led.”

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Adrienne Sahw permalink
    March 15, 2012 5:39 PM

    Yes a great place to be and enjoy, better than what you can find in NZ

    THE DYING COW is the place to have a pint in

  2. the macroom woman permalink
    July 17, 2012 1:55 PM

    That pub never closes at all..its a real life 2012 Sibín (Shebeen) in the heart of Ireland. Take a look at the “leaning” counter next time you order a pint there!!!

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