This photo was taken in November, 1993 on the Dingle Peninsula. I was staying in a B&B where Julia Roberts had stayed when she threw over Keifer Sutherland and ran off to Ireland with Jason Patric. It put the tiny town on the map, so to speak.
Dingle is a small, charming place where there are lots of colorful pubs, restaurants and shops. During the 16th Century, it was a main trading port for the English. I was not driving a car on this trip, but I wanted to see the Blasket Islands, so I took a bus out to a palce where there were only a few houses, one pub and a pottery shop/cafe. The bus driver told me he would be back in four hours and that I could always go into the pub if I got cold, hungry or tired.
Well, I walked around for a couple of hours, took many, many photographs and then returned to the pub, thinking I would have some lunch. It was closed, so I walked off in another direction where I had seen signs for the pottery shop/cafe. I had some lunch once I got there and struck up a conversation with the woman behind the counter. She advised that the owners of the pub were off to Dublin for a few days and that the pub would probably not be open until the evening when the barman turned up.
By now it was getting a little chilly…there is nothing like the wind off the Atlantic Coast of Ireland, and I took some great photos of the wind blowing the sea foam up onto the tops of the cliffs. If I had had another day or two, I might have talked someone into taking a boat ride out to the Blasket Islands, but since it was November, the tourist season was over and the locals were not advertising this service. The word Blasket probably comes from the Norse word meaning “dangerous place.” These islands were inhabited until 1953 by people who only spoke the Irish language. Interestingly enough, a lot of these people relocated to Springfield, Massachusetts. I have not had the time to research the reason for this, but I am sure there is one. Others stayed on the Dingle Peninsula. The islands are sometimes referred to as “next parish America” since they extend to the very western-most point of Ireland.
The bus came along a little while later and took me back to Dingle. The sun had come out by this time and the bus driver stopped in a couple of places…unbidden… so I could get more photographs of the spectacular landscapes. That’s the way the Irish are, especially the ones who encounter a lot of American tourists! When I got back to the B&B that afternoon, I decided I would attempt driving on my next trip over…it didn’t seem too difficult once you got outside Dublin. It took a few years before I finally tried it with cousins (in 2000), but I have not looked back since!