Leaving Cork

This piece was written by a fellow Corkwoman, and I have felt the same every time I left Cork to go back to my ‘other life’ in a far away country.

The Cork Woman

My first piece ever, was published in The Irish Examiner.bus 3

Leaving Cork is something I’d expect to be getting used to at this point.  I’ve been doing it seriously for 21 years now. That first time was the worst.  Right before leaving for the airport my Dad and I took a walk down a country boreen by his house in Waterfall, and I waited for him to ask me not to go.  I would have changed my mind so easily then.  But he didn’t.  Instead he talked about the power of youth and opportunity, and the importance of being brave with your life.  That was all very inspiring of course, but what I really wanted him to say was, “Leave? Don’t be ridiculous.  Come back inside and we’ll have a cup of tea”. He didn’t though, and I sobbed and sighed all the way to Shannon, and then heaved my…

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Welcome Spring!

dsc_1942.jpgAfter a very long, very wet, very windy winter, it is so nice to see a bright day and to pick the first daffodils from the garden.   Welcome, you lovely cheerful flowers, we have missed you!

Linked to Floral Friday Fotos and Weekly Photo Challenge

Photo 101 : Day 4 – Bliss

A cuddle and a cuppa

A cuddle and a cuppa

Today is not a very nice day in Cork, it’s wet and windy and so I have been looking through my photo stacks for ‘blissful’ photos, and what could be better than having my grandson sitting comfortably on my lap while I enjoy a nice cup of (Barry’s) Tea!

Photography 101 : Day 2 – Street

I live near Cork city, whose main street is St. Patrick’s Street, or  Patrick Street, and if I walk down the length of Patrick Street, cross over St. Patrick’s Bridge, I come to Bridge Street, and then climb up a steep hill called….you guessed it…St. Patrick’s Hill – our city fathers lacked a little bit of imagination in the naming of the neighbourhood, but that was a long time ago:

Most authorities agree that St. Patrick’s Street was formed in 1783. It is not shown on Rocque’s map of 1774 but there are entries for the street in Lucas’ directory of 1787. During the 1780s many of the streets that now form the city centre of Cork were formed by the spanning of the river channels between the islands of the Lee.

Here is a view of Patrick Street, looking down from Patrick’s Hill

Looking down from above

Looking down from above



Photography 101 : Home

Home is elusive. When we think about this word, we might picture different physical locations. And while home is often found on a map, it can also be less tangible: a loved one, a state of mind.


For my first entry for Photography 101, here is a photo of my home town – a view of Cork Harbour looking up towards Cork City. Welcome to my home, and I hope you come and visit again.

Cork City on the River Lee

Cork City on the River Lee

More Winter Storms on the Way!

This afternoon we took a drive to Weavers Point, Crosshaven, to look at the waves coming in to Cork Harbour from the Atlantic.  We were right across the bay from Roches Point Lighthouse,  at the mouth of Cork Harbour, which is right in the path of the wind.

The South of Ireland got quite a battering in the past few days with wind and high tides, and more forecast for tonight.    There were plenty white horses on the waves, though the wind was not so strong  this afternoon.  Some of the photos look pleasant, because the sun was shining, but the wind was howling, and I am so glad to be on firm ground, and not on a ship being tossed about in the waves.

Looking out my back door.

Roches Point, Cork Harbour

Roches Point

Kinsale and it’s Charm

I live fairly close to the lovely town of Kinsale, in County Cork, and it is a place that always has a buzz about it, gets lots of visitors, has plenty cafes, restaurants and bars,  (sometimes known as the Gourmet Capital of Ireland).  There are great walks such as the Scilly Walk,  which is a 4km trail along by the sea, which brings you to a 400 year old fort (Charles Fort) that has been restored and is a major tourist attraction.   This is a star shaped fort and was occupied by the British when the  battle of Kinsale took place in 1601, when the British were almost defeated by the combined forces of the Spanish and Irish armies.   The fort was restored in later years, and was declared a national monument in 1973.    On the walk to Charles Fort, should you be in need of some light refreshments, or even a pint, there are some very nice pubs, such as the Spaniard, one of the oldest pubs in Kinsale, or the Bulman, which is in Summercove, and is a great place to sit outside and watch the world go by, on a sunny day.

A few miles further on from the town is the Old Head of Kinsale, where there is a lighthouse, and in 1915 the RMS Lusitania, a Cunard ocean liner,  sank off the Old Head, during the first world war.  The ship was torpedoed by a German U Boat, and sank in 20 minutes, with the loss of over 1000 passengers.

This past weekend was the Guiness Cork Jazz Festival, and Kinsale, which is only about 20 minutes drive from Cork, also holds a jazz festival on the same weekend, so there is a great choice of places to hear live music.

Kinsale is also a great fishing and yachting town, and you can see the fishing boats coming in every morning to bring fresh fish to the restaurants and fishmongers.   As a child I remember coming down to the pier close to one of the local hotels, where there was often a shark being weighed straight off a fishing boat.

Above are some photos so you can see some of its charm for yourself.

Views of Cork on Culture Night

Friday night was Culture Night all over Ireland, where all public buildings, art galleries, theatres etc., were open to the public, free of charge.   Most places were open till 9 p.m., and provided guided tours, music and song, and even a little wine and nibbles in some cases (always the most popular venues!)

I think that it should be a Culture Weekend, or even Culture Week, as there are so many cool and interesting places to see, some of them only open their doors to the public on Culture Night, and there is not enough time to see everything.  In 3 hours we only managed to visit 4 places which were all very interesting – The Masonic Hall,The Quaker Meeting House, Elizabeth Fort  a 17th century star shaped which was built by the English in 1602, and the world famous English Market, which was first opened in 1862, and was visited by many famous people over the years, and most recently by Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, when they visited Ireland about 2 years ago.

I will write about the above places in more detail in the next week, but for now I would like to show you some views of Cork, mainly taken from the top of Elizabeth Fort, off Barrack Street, one of the oldest parts of Cork City.

Weekly Photo Challenge: From Lines to Patterns

The gravel driveway in my garden makes an interesting pattern against the grass that needs to be cut, and the last of the summer flowers.

I love the patterns in this plate, and also the etching on the crystal vase

Everyday things make a good subject, when you look more closely, like this tablecloth

or my floor tiles

and my new hobby, I have started to knit, small simple things now, though I may progress to more complicated things once the long nights kick in, I might be able to combine knit one, purl one, with reading blogs!




Cee’s Which Way Challenge – Week 4

This week in Cee’s challenge, I would like to show you a few bridges that I have come across on my walks. The first of these was at a Rifugio (restaurant/rest house) on our travels in Italy, a welcome break after a steep climb at high altitude, on one of our first days walking in the Dolomite mountains.Image

The picture below was taken in Cork city at daybreak (yes, I do get out walking early…sometimes) we were on a charity walk for Pieta House for  Suicide Awareness.   This walk was called Darkness into Light, and started before the dawn, and we walked into the light, it was a very moving experience


And how about this view, taken from a bridge when on holiday in Duquesa, in the south of Spain?


Looks like a deserted street except for the washing hanging out!

The following photos were taken on a walk in Glenbower Woods, near Killeagh, Co Cork,  a few months ago, and covers two subjects, a bridge and a path!

Glenbower Wood

Glenbower Wood

Another view of the old bridge at Glenbower Wood

Another view of the old bridge at Glenbower Wood

For more entries to this challenge, check out  http://www.ceephotography.com/2013/07/31/cees-which-way-challenge-week-4/

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