Ireland continues to inspire and fascinate.
Last year we were heading to the coast to catch the ferry from Waterford back to England, our last day before making the crossing.
It was a wild day, a gale blowing , overall grey,with misty veils, bleak and soggy. The day dampened spirits; there was so much more we would have liked to explore yet had a very tight time constraint so that the trip had been quite pressured trying to fit in too much in too little time .
Time has let that experience simmer and start to come together and weave a tapestry of beautiful memories igniting the desire to go back and discover more about places visited, to learn more, to understand better and to connect to the heritage and ancestors as well as to infuse the imagination with creative ideas, sowing seeds to be nurtured and nourished till they flourish and take form.
On our way out of Killarney, travelling along the N22, we were awed by this roadside sculpture of a rearing unicorn which reminded how powerful the ancient history, myth and magic is interwoven in the landscape; constant reminders of connections that go beyond time, words and imagination.
From the grey moist screen a village appeared, a village that was such a delightful surprise, for all was not as it appeared to be. Often things we see may appear to be “real” or are they? Fantasy and reality entwined.
We had happened upon Ardmore. As we arrived the rain was so heavy that it screened most of the bay and surrounding cliffs. We were not aware of the ruins or the links to early Christianity in a time before Saint Patrick had arrived .
It was only the immediate street and houses that straddled along it and a small waterfront that captured out attention. We learnt that a tidy town competition had inspired a local artist to “dress” the cottages .
I guess reality would be of a harsh life as a fisherman but here it was rather whimsical, the stuff that “Once upon a time” begins a tale of adversity,struggle and courage to defeat inner dragons and rescue the beauty that has been imprisoned. It was like stepping into the pages of a story book, and one would wish that the ending is a “happy ever after”.
This village sparkled sharing colour,whimsy and pride of place.
A village given over to art and beauty, perhaps a disconnect to the harshness of the past in an attempt to create dreams of a brighter future. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes the village emerged from a grey watery shroud sharing colour, dreams and whimsy.