Killarney, a place of magic, greenery, peace, quiet, life and tranquillity. On the weekend just gone I took a train to Killarney with Lizz and Florence. We enjoyed the trip amusing an Irish man who couldn’t help but join in on our conversation as we discussed black bunnies, and silly events that have occurred in the last 2 weeks whilst exploring his country. It passed time and we arrived at our Hostel before we knew it.
The Saturday I partook in my first bus tour. As ambivalent as I was about this I actually really enjoyed my time. The driver was good craic and also found us girls highly amusing, as we like to hang outside for a long time whenever he stopped. We were always being chased back on the bus – but all in fun spirits. The Ring of Kerry was absolutely stunning, breathtaking, and magnificent! The lakes that spread out with mist rising on the surface, Ireland continues to show me its mystical spirit. The beauty of the rugged cliff edges and rocky shoreline show the wildness and free spirit of this land. Again, I was given the blessings of a beautiful sunny weekend. The day went by and I saw so much beauty, got to know an older British couple that remained entertained the whole journey by our youthful delights (ie. Taking many jumping photos on the edge of cliffs, and discussing whether we should go skinny dipping in the Irish Sea).
I learnt a lot about the Irish history and area from the bus driver. He told us how the mountains were formed, which was by plate movement, and the mountains got rounded on one side from the ice age with the wind and snow being blown in one direction. I also lend some of the history of the famine, the struggles, loss and hardships. It is really quiet extraordinary, and sad the loss that this country has experienced, and is even going through now. The picture with the tree in front of the church was planted during the great famine, it has 2000 children’s bodies buried beneath. Irelands population halved in a few decades due to death, poverty, and emigration. Not due to lack of food in the country, but lack of ability to access food. The Protestants had a greater export of crops and resources then the number of people in Ireland, yet they watched them slowly die from starvation and the potato famine. I will not get you all bogged down in the history, but merely say, Ireland has had a bumpy journey, and still is with the recession.
Saturday evening was nice, however I came down with a bit of a cold. However Sunday I woke up and was ready to dive into another day of exploration and wonder. We roamed around the Killarney National Park. It was gorgeous. Just exquisite. I breathed deeply and could actually feel some of my Irish roots deep in the soil. I just imagined having a small cottage in the fields with the cows.
We visited Ross Castle, and all I can say is I am glad I am not living in the 1500th Century! Punishment was not nice. Hot oil, tar, rocks and swords. Mmmmm
A very nice lady who was suppose to be giving us directions to Muckross House, ended up driving us there with her dog Precious (unfortunately we never found out her name).
At Muckross House we went to the traditional farms and met many animals, my favourite was the donkey. The farm was set up to resemble what it would have been like in Ireland back a few decades or more. The little farmhouses are so cosy and simple. Life was simple. But hard. But I couldn’t help thinking, maybe I should just live off a farm… simplicity sometimes is the key to peace and tranquillity. This was one of my favourite parts of the day walking down the little dirt lanes and viewing what life was once like.
We walked to a small waterfall and enjoyed the green of the forest, then set a cracking pace to a small abbey that was in ruins on the lake before walking 5 miles back to town in a gentle misty rain.
Simply – Killarney is one magic spot. I feel like I have experienced and felt some of Ireland now.
A funny toilet sign