|Celtic Crosses at Kilmacduagh Monastery just outside Gort, County Clare|
A couple of you were kind enough to ask about my recent trip to Ireland so I'll take a little break from Poor Farm activity and share my adventures at NUIG (National University Ireland, Galway)
|Welcoming statue at NUIG|
If you have followed me over here from my old blog, The Midlife Farmwife, you know this was not my first visit to the beautiful island of Eire. When I lived in corporate nurse management world and later when Keith and I had our much larger organic beef/pork/dairy business there were more funds to gad about, so I've done the tourist thing in Ireland many times in the past 15 years; this year however was very different.
I went as a gawky, doe-eyed, innocent student.
Ok, ok, I went as a grey haired, cynical, wind-whipped, and wrinkled around the edges student. Same difference but less likely to run off with an Italian Study Abroad student; who has the energy for that anyway? I was part of Irish Studies Program at NUIG a four week session hosting students from all over the world. I focused on a Creative Writing course taught by super author Mike McCormack and Gaelic Culture and Literature taught by the dynamic Kicki Ingridsdotter and Liam O'hAisibe'il master of placenames, surnames and all other Irish names only he could pronounce. I also squeezed in an Irish Language class, a Sean Nos Dance class, a Sean Nos singing class and invited myself to a couple extra field trips I wasn't scheduled to attend. I certainly got my tuitions worth.
|Like I said, grey-haired, cynical, wind-whipped etc...|
I especially enjoyed the "buskers" those who perform in the streets for money. Glen Hansard is one of the most famous Irish buskers, a very personal favorite of mine, who has gone on to great acclaim . I would often grab a cup of tea to go and wonder Galway streets after class just for the fun of people watching and short story material gathering.
|Galway City Centre|
|Buskers include all types of entertainers|
|View over Dingle Bay|
|Belted Galloway cows seen from our bus ride down into Dingle|
Green, so wonderfully green.
|Film sight from the beginning of the 1992 film, Far and Away.|
|Film sight of beach scenes of the 1970 film Ryans Daughter|
|Thoor Ballylee, home of William Butler Yeats near Gort|
County Galway, Ireland. This bridge was also used in the 1952 film
Quiet Man with John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara
That evening after making it back to my little rental studio in Galway I found an email from the iYeats Poetry Contest folk informing me that a poem I entered back in May, While Waiting for the Coroner, was being recognized as "highly commended." This is my first published poem and I am thrilled and once again a big believer in The Luck of The Irish. My poem was inspired by the families I cared for while a hospice nurse. If interested in giving it a read just click Here.
So there you have it, How I spent My Summer, more or less. Next post...back to life on The Poor Farm and more GBH updates.
|View from inside Yeats home, Thoor Ballylea|