Last night, our furnace died. Timmy and I pushed our couch close the fireplace and spent the evening sitting in the firelight, writing on Christmas cards, eating warm chocolate chip cookies, and talking. Suddenly Timmy pondered, “I wonder what Patricia is doing right now.” And we both burst into laughter, remembering our crazy Bed and Breakfast experience in Ireland, on our honeymoon. It is such a funny story, I decided to take a page out of our Ireland diary and share our experience with Patricia.

  6/28/09 – written by Becki

Today we arrived in Ireland and drove straight to our bed and breakfast in Killkenny. This place was highly recommended by our Frommer’s Guide, and we had happy hopes for our first bed and breakfast experience.

I’m not sure exactly when I began to fear for my life, but it may have been when we arrived to find a deserted old farmstead, parked our car next to a rusty old truck covered in spider webs, and shone our headlights down a dark, creepy, alley of trees that ran behind the house. The beam of our lights illuminated a large pile of bones. Animal bones… I hoped. 

Tim, of course, sprang out of the car with enthusiasm (ummm… didn’t he see those bones?!) and began to call loudly for the owner, Patricia. I tentatively emerged, only to nearly trip over a mewing cat. I reached down to pet the furry creature, but when it turned it’s face toward me, I almost screamed. The brute was matted and dirty and it’s left ear was completely ripped off. A large scar ran down it’s left eye, giving it a glazed, glaring stare. With a shriek, I jumped back into the car and closed the door, feeling as if I had landed in a haunted forest. Mangy Cat hissed and retreated into the overgrown, tangled garden. We tensely waited for Patricia to show up. 

Things only got worse after Patricia arrived. She came careening around the corner of the house, and greeted us with frizzy, flying hair. We were introduced to her “son”, Oswald, who happens to be a black cat that follows her everywhere. (A black cat seems too fitting.) When Tim asked her if she had any children, she responded, "No! OSWALD is my son. I don't know why anyone HAS children..." I have the odd feeling that her "son" understood our entire conversation, and his yellow eyes watched us knowingly as we were led to our sleeping quarters. 

The room is located above the barn, and every surface is covered with thick dust. Little spiders populate the windows, and stringy webs hang from the ceiling. Cat hair is floating through the air, and I distinctly smell the pungent odor of wet mold. Oh, and the water isn't working. Our bed is a mattress thrown on the floor. There is a door, locked from the inside, leading to… where? I just rattled the handle and peeked through the keyhole, only to see what I think resembles a sharpened axe. Tim thinks I am imagining things. (I just pushed every available piece of furniture against the door, hopefully blocking anyone from entering through it.)

 I think things really went downhill when Patricia found out I am vegan. Should I be afraid that our insane hostess actually told me I’m “done for”? Because that’s what she said, and I am definitely sleeping with a knife tonight. (Whether Timmy likes it or not.)

Monday, 6/29/09 - Written by Becki

We survived the night. Oswald was sitting outside our door (which happens to be glass, so anyone – or anything - can just see right in at any moment!) when we got up this morning. That little creature gives me the creeps. Patricia flew into a rage at breakfast because I mentioned I might get my hair cut. She keeps repeating that I’m “done for”… Tim doesn’t seem to be as disturbed by this as I am. Perhaps that is because she loves him for his meat eating ways, and has been serving him “loads of meat” and eggs… Today we plan to explore Kilkenny. Patricia invited us to swim with her and Oswald in the river, but we declined. Our water was finally fixed and we were able to take showers. Patricia was very friendly tonight. (Perhaps too friendly?) She actually tried to carry on a conversation with us, through the door, while we were showering!!! She seems very insulted that we don’t want to drink wine with her.

Tuesday, 6/30/09
- Written by Becki

This morning we awoke early, ready to leave this madhouse. I’m not sure I can even begin to describe what transpired at breakfast. Tim casually mentioned that we had booked a hotel in Killarney (which is where we are now – in a beautiful HOTEL ROOM!). Patricia pierced him with a look and asked him how he had booked it. I saw it all happen in slow motion. Tim opened his mouth and spoke the words, “Oh, we used the computer in the guest room.” I threw out my hands to stop him, because I saw Patricia’s face turn an alarming shade of red. She began to rant and wave her hands and cackle (yes, that is a good word for it) in a hideous sort of manner. She proclaimed that we really were “done for” (I don’t like being told I’m done for) and that it is illegal to use someone elses computer in Ireland. (Not true.) We tried to explain that when we found a computer in the guest room, and it was on, we assumed it was meant for the guests to use. She immediately ran to the computer, and started screaming that we had broken it. Of course, this wasn’t the case, and she was unable to listen to reason. I actually thought she was going to call the police. I have never felt more sickened in my life. Suddenly, I knew it was very important for us to leave as quickly as possible, and I told Tim as much. We RAN out the door. Nothing could have persuaded me to stop. 

6/30/09 - Written by Timmy

This morning was a difficult experience. Patricia freaked out.
We finally escaped, and it felt like we were fleeing from some sort of evil.

There is a type of terror about that woman that I can't quite explain. 

I think we may never stay at a bed and breakfast

ever again.


  1. Well, this funny story entertained Liz and I while she was nursing Nathaniel. We laughed very hard and I enjoyed the photos that went along with your descriptive narrative. Well done Bea!

  2. hahaha! Wow what a time that was! I do not think that think there is anyway to describe Patricia. At first we thought the eccentric behavior was somewhat endearing. However somewhere after the shouting to us in the shower and telling us that many people die after getting their hair died, I began to fear for our well being.
    However after it was all said and done it is one of our most talked about and funny stories from the trip. And its hilarious to think of what she may be doing at any given moment, because its probably something a little frightening!

  3. Did you ever confirm those were non-human bones?

    I'll make sure we have someone take another look at the Cullintra House before the next edition of the Ireland book.