Frankly, I never really wanted to visit Ireland. I am not a fan of St Patrick’s Day. Stems from my dad who would perversely give out oranges on March 17. Orange for Northern Ireland. (As our driver says – the north of the country). And dad was a Swede so I am not sure why he did this.
And then there were The Troubles. A mild name for the fighting between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. I was disgusted by this war between Protestant and Catholic. Ok. I have learned a lot more about Irish history and it’s more complicated than I realized. So all that aside, I ended up here.
And I am enthralled. A spectacular country. A much different scale for me. And friendly folk who almost speak English! And I say that referring to their accent, not the Gaelic/Irish language. Some days they are almost as difficult to understand as those Kiwis!
i am drawn to the valley near Kylemore Abbey and the Dingle Pennisula. But I don’t know why. I have an even stronger attraction to the Brittany region in France – clearly an attachment to the Celts. Being with some dozen others and nonstop traveling, I haven’t had a moment to meditate on this. It may require a return trip…
But that’s problematic. Not sure I want another motorcoach trip (see next blog post) and doubt the rail service will get me to the right places and driving on the left – well, I have done it but I think I am past that now Especially if I come back on my own without a navigator and watcher who can yell “get in the other lane!!!!”
This was brought home to me when we watched someone drift to the wrong side, hit the wall, flip over and spin. Literally. (Photo above- can’t figure out how to place photos from a iPhone post…). She was up ahead of us. As we pulled up to the car, we were holding our breath. And slowly a hand reached out the driver’s side window followed by a head. She pulled herself out and stood A swollen lip seemed to be the extent of her injuries- but I wouldn’t rule out back or neck issues later She was alone, from Michigan but living in Iceland. And was on day two of her vacation She might have been reading a map and eating an apple- a half-eaten apple had rolled out a window and was lying on the roadside. Our driver called the Garda (police). A local stopped and stayed with her as she called the car rental company (hope she had insurance – it was totaled) and we went on our way. Interestingly enough, the Garda called back about 2 hrs later They couldn’t find the wreck. I hope she is doing well.
But when I return to Ireland, I won’t be driving!