|It was fantastic to have friends Lisa and Barry and friend Chuck visit us in Connemara for a few days! We met Lisa and Barry on a cruise in November 2017.
Fascinating Fact of the Day About Ireland
“There are around 82,600 speakers of Irish who use the language at home daily. Contrast this with Polish, where 119,526 speak the language at home, making it the second most spoken language on the island!”
Unfortunately, we weren’t able to do everything we’d planned while in Connemara, Ireland. Perhaps someday we’ll return and stay in another area with a better opportunity to explore and see the sites.
|What an adorable sheep with his budding horns.
But overall, we felt our time here was enjoyable and worthwhile as we came to understand the culture, the terrain, and the unique personality of this particular location.
|The views across the bay were stunning, even on cloudy days.
Also, we experienced visits to a few museums, a history center, a castle, a famous fish shop, a world-renowned food truck, an exciting visit to the quaint town of Oughterard, a renowned craft shop, and a tour of the popular Roundstone area.
We spent endless hours driving through the countryside reveling in the stunning views, including seeing a vast number of adorable barnyard animals, including sheep, goats, donkeys, cattle, horses.
|Various ruins of homes, barns, and castles pepper the landscape.
Each evening we took time to relax while gazing out the big picture window to scan the sea for boats, people, birds, and wildlife. A few days ago, we spotted two otters close to the shore.
|We visited a museum in Clifden, the Station House Museum.
On many evenings we giggled over the cattle in our side yard. For those growing up in this area, none of this would be exciting. But for us, we loved every moment.
We dined in only a few restaurants but thoroughly enjoyed cooking our meals at “home” with the vast array of foodstuffs we hadn’t had access to in a long time. Even a trip to the supermarket was a delightful experience.
|The museum has a wide array of well-preserved antiques indigenous to the area.
This stay provided the best access we ever had to delicious fish and seafood, most of which we purchased at our front door from dear friend and fish guy, John. Tom had a chance to have the finest fish and chips he’d ever had by a short drive to John and wife Theresa’s takeaway seafood shop in Carna, Flaherty’s Seafood.
|A Connemara pony, unique to the area.
We ate authentic scallops sauteed with butter, olive oil, and garlic for a taste-tempting treat like non-other. I sauteed the finest calamari rings I’ve ever had in the same manner as the scallops.
We met beautiful people everywhere we went, including Eileen, our property owner, Ann, our house cleaner, and the fine people at every shop, restaurant, and stop along the way.
|We couldn’t help but love this pretty cow’s horns.
Yes, I’ve struggled with the steep spiral staircase to the bedroom level, which ultimately proved to be a good exercise for me. Although I still push myself to get upstairs, once there, my heart rate recovers quickly.
|Cute little rabbit stopping by on a sunny morning.
Tomorrow morning, at 10:00 am, we’re leaving the house to drive to Dublin, where we’ll spend the night. Once we arrive and get settled into our hotel, I’ll prepare a short post, the last from Ireland.
|At the bar in the restaurant Tigh Mheach. (I dare you to pronounce this!)
From there, we’re off to the US for a two-plus-month stay in several locations in three states; Minnesota, Nevada, and Arizona.
Watch for a post tomorrow, a few hours later than usual, allowing us ample time to drive to Dublin.
Below is the total expenses for the three months we spent in Connemara with one night in Dublin:
Ireland 5/11/19 to 8/8/19
US Dollar Euro
Rent + Hotel $ 7500.36 6700.70
Air, Train, Ferry 3853.17 3442.56
Taxi, Car Rental, Fuel 2967.03 2650.37
Entertainment 275.00 245.68
Dining Out 378.35 338.01
Groceries 3434.90 3068.68
Misc., Tips, Cleaning 1046.81 935.20
TOTAL $19955.62 17381.00
Monthly Average 6651.87 5967.95
Daily Average 224.22 200.27
*In this case, the expenses were higher than initially budgeted due to the cost of the business class airfare for me for the long flight from South Africa to Ireland. In the majority of cases, we both fly coach.
Enjoy the day and evening!
|Four hornbills loving our birdfeeder. For more photos, please click here.