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Taking a Closer Look

January 22, 2011

Our website is still so young and fresh that it still has that new website smell about it, so here at TAP we’re still playing with some different ideas for our weekly articles.  This week we wanted to take one picture from one of our trips that we really like and tell you the story behind it.

Picking one picture to sum up our Ireland tour wasn’t easy.  Between my regular camera and my iPhone (which I was using to upload pictures to Facebook throughout the trip) I took somewhere around 1,200 photos in 10 days in Ireland.  With that many photos, there’s no way I can remember the story behind every single one of them, and even though I actually don’t even remember taking this picture – it’s become my favorite pic from Ireland.

You write the caption for this one. Come up with something creative and fun.

Four girls going somewhere.

TAP isn’t about being somewhere, it’s about going somewhere.  What’s the difference?  It’s simple.  Being somewhere implies that once you get there, you sit, you lounge, you read a book on the beach, you have a spa day.  TAP isn’t a spa day kind of adventure – TAP is always on the go, always seeking something new, always digging deeper, and always finding more.

Even though I don’t remember taking the picture, I do recall exactly where it was taken.  We had just left Blarney Castle, and yes, I do realize it looks like the girls are headed towards the castle, but they weren’t – trust me, it was a really twisty path.  After exploring the old castle and seeing what every tourist there sees, including climbing to the top and hanging backwards over the side of the outer wall to kiss the Blarney Stone, we weren’t satisfied.

A lot of the grown ups left the group.  Their tour was different than ours.  They dashed up to the top of the castle, took a few pictures, smooched the rock, visited the gift shop, and headed off to the Blarney Woolen Mills – a gigantic shopping complex on the other side of the property.  The kids and the teachers (and a few of the adults) didn’t do that.  We had more to explore, and we weren’t going to spend our valuable time in a mall.

Thank goodness we skipped the shopping, because the castle grounds around Blarney wound up being one of my favorite parts of the entire trip.  Just a little bit off-the-beaten-path, enough so that it was an adventure for us.  We left the castle and followed the old walls for a while.  After climbing around for a while in what used to be one of the castle’s towers, the path suddenly curved back towards the castle.  Even though we were leaving, we were still headed towards something.

Then, we found ourselves deep in the woods, almost transported back in time.  A few minutes after this picture was taken, we were wandering through a maze of waterfalls, caves, stone staircases, and rock formations with fun names like The Witch’s Kitchen, The Druid’s Cave, and the Wishing Steps.

There was no one else out there, just 25 folks from little old Minooka, Illinois running around the woods near an Irish castle pretending to be Robin Hood or Cuchulain* or Finn MacCool* out there in the wilderness.

This picture, to me, kind of sums up a TAP trip.  We’re always going somewhere.  Always headed towards an adventure.

What does this picture mean to you?  If you could name this picture – what would the title be?

* Look those dudes up, some great stories of really cool Irish legends.

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