Things we can count on…Ireland…

What a view!

“Fascinating Fact of the Day About Ireland”

“Hook Lighthouse in Hook Head, County Wexford, is believed to be the oldest working lighthouse in Europe and possibly even the world.”

A year ago today, we wrote a story on “things we can count on” in Marloth Park, South Africa, which prompted me to consider the “things we can count on” since our arrival in Connemara, Ireland 37 days ago.
Curious cow.

Some may assume we haven’t grasped the true nature of Ireland when we haven’t been out as much as usual. A few days ago, one of our readers wrote the following comment with my response below:

Unknown said…
Please don’t let the weather keep you inside….buy a sweatshirt and a raincoat and go….we’ve been in Ireland and Scotland as well as the Baltic countries. In any of these places, the weather can be cool, rainy, windy a lot of days. We don’t let it keep us inside and eat up days of a trip…..go despite the weather. 7:52 am 

Jessica said…

Dear Unknown, we so appreciate your comment. But, the reality for us is two-fold right now. One, I only had two surgeries on both of my legs a short time after cardiac bypass surgery, a little over two months ago and walking on uneven surfaces presents a severe risk of falling. Secondly, for us, this isn’t a “trip.” This is our daily lives, and in our old lives, we seldom went “sightseeing.” We have warm clothing and raincoats, but I must heal more before getting out on slippery surfaces. This is our reality right now, and we strive every day to make the best of it, in good and bad weather. Thank you kindly for your comment. It is greatly appreciated.
Warmest regards,
Jess & Tom
Painted sheep…everywhere!

We certainly understood and appreciated this well-intentioned comment and thanked the reader for taking the time to write to us. Most readers quietly lurk in the background, seldom commenting. I do this when reading most blogs, reading and failing to express any thoughts, suggestions, or comments.

Rarely do we ever receive negative comments from readers? We can only attribute this to our sense of vulnerability expressed here. It’s tough to be negative to those who admit their foibles and shortcomings, which we freely do here day after day. But, when our readers write, we take their comments seriously.

I so agreed with the above writer. Her/his comments would be so true under different circumstances. We decided to respond to the comment with the utmost forthrightness, again being candid about our reality.

She was lounging on a hillside.

Sure, we wish we could be out several days a week exploring. But, when it rains, and I’m not feeling 100%, it’s simply not appealing to bundle up in rainproof clothing and trek through areas with slippery grass, hills, and often steep roads to climb.  

Regardless of this temporary slow-down in our sightseeing over the past four months, we have found many “things we can count on” here in Ireland when we’re only heading out a few times each week to take photos and discover what we can.

However, in the simplicity of life we’re living here in Ireland, we’ve encountered several “things we can count on.”

They include:

  • A stunning view out of most windows in a beautiful house
  • The sunset is breathtaking on clear nights as late as 2200 hours, 10:00 pm
  • It’s still light up until almost 2300 hours, 11:00 pm
  • There has yet to be an uncomfortably warm day
  • Locals are amiable, helpful, and humorous
  • Fish and seafood is readily available, freshly caught from the Atlantic Ocean
  • The “fish guy,” John, stops by each Tuesday afternoon with fantastic options
  • Organic foods are functional in abundance in grocery stores
  • Concern for the environment is a vital part of life in Ireland
  • Ruins are regarded as an essential part of Irish history and are strewn about the countryside in their historic glory
  • The property we’re renting runs on solar power for heating water and warming the house (although electricity and WiFi is provided)
  • WiFi service is dependable and high speed
  • Driving to any venue is an opportunity to see exceptional scenery
  • Animals such as sheep, goats, cattle, donkeys, and horses are spotted on every outing
  • Seabirds and other birds are plentiful
  • There are few venomous spiders and other creatures
  • Mosquitos seem to be non-existent, although there may be midges at dawn and dusk (“The Highland midge is a species of small flying insect, found across the Palearctic in upland and lowland areas. In the northwest of Scotland and northern Wales, the Highland midge is usually very prevalent from late spring to late summer,”) during which time one should stay indoors, use repellent and keep windows shut.  (There are no screens on windows).  We’ve yet to use any repellent while here.

It’s a rarity to find any insects indoors other than an occasional harmless spider or isolated fly.

A Connemara mare and her colt.

Well, you get the drift. There are many more “things we can count on” here in Ireland, and the list could go on and on, especially based on one’s preferences.  While we are here for the next 54 days until we depart for the following location.

Have a fantastic day reveling in “things you can count on!”
Photo from one year ago today, June 18, 2018:
“Zebras are very fast-moving animals and can reach speeds of up to 65 kph (40 mph) when galloping across the plains. This is just fast enough to outpace predators such as lions. Foals can run with the herd within a few hours of birth.”  For more details, please click here.

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