Thursday, November 16, 2017

Rain today with scattered sunshine

That's the actual weather report from the little man on the tele. It's been raining a lot. No one around here complains, after all, rain is why we have the Emerald Isle. The locals just say, "I's a bit'a ran tada," which means bring a good umbrella or stay inside and nurture pints. "A lovely d'y" is still cloudy but with no drops, drizzle or mist. A good time for a walk on the beach.

When the clouds do part and the sun does shine, it pours. A sunbreak as the folks in Seattle say. "Just grand," is how the Irish express it.

Dingle is the quintessential seaport village, located on the Dingle Peninsula in southwest Ireland. Home to less than 2,000 souls and visited by over a million tourists each year. Even Christopher Columbus came to visit in 1477 before he sailed Stateside. 

When you order the famed fish'n'chips, this is how it comes: out of the sea and into a delivery truck,

then driven across the street and cooked into the traditional gastronomic delight.

The quiet, colorful streets seem to glow.

All beautiful days come to an end. Rain is on its way. Time to dream of more scattered sunshine!

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Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Last Rose of Summer

Tralee, Trá lí, is the big city of Co. Kerry but not much of a tourist destination. Popular in Medieval times, now it's fame comes from the Rose of Tralee International Festival which includes a beauty pageant where the rose of the year is crowned. The bronze statue in Rose Park sets the standard.

This year's rose is Jenifer Byrne, a black-haired beauty that topped the red-hair competition. OMG!

While the judging is long complete, I still offer my pick for the best rose of the year:

It was the last blooming rose I could find in the park. 

Which reminded me of Thomas Moore's poem written in 1805 while he was visiting Kilkenny, Ireland:

The Last Rose of Summer

'Tis the last rose of summer,
Left blooming alone;
All her lovely companions
Are faded and gone;
No flower of her kindred,
No rosebud is nigh,
To reflect back her blushes,
Or give sigh for sigh.

I'll not leave thee, thou lone one!
To pine on the stem;
Since the lovely are sleeping,
Go, sleep thou with them.
Thus kindly I scatter,
Thy leaves o'er the bed,
Where thy mates of the garden
Lie scentless and dead.

So soon may I follow,
When friendships decay,
And from Love's shining circle
The gems drop away.
When true hearts lie withered,
And fond ones are flown,
Oh! who would inhabit
This bleak world alone?

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