One Week.

It's been exactly a week now.  Hard to believe.  I'm sitting up in bed in the loft, ready to conclude another day.  I spent a lot of today in, between the snow and the wind.  But, I did get out late morning for a 2 hour walk.  

I swear this country is in technicolor.  I'm not sure if it was due to the snow on the ground, and the greens and russets reflected back in the white, but you'll see what I mean if you look at the photos.  

This morning was gorgeous!  It doesn't really fully get light here until around 8:30 or 9:00, and I knew wind was coming in later today, so I left a little earlier than usual.  Even now it's rolling around the cottage and the glen.  Not as bad as the other day, but loud enough that it sounds like thunder rolling through.

I went on my favorite walk, up the hill.  There's a certain point where the road levels out and you can see across the valley and I knew it would make for some good pics.  And it was cold.  I bundled up from head to toe.  

When I got back in from my walk, Steph messaged me if I had seen a ram on my walk.  I hadn't, but I did see some hoof marks in the snow I didn't recognize and let Steph know he headed up the hill.  He escaped to go further down the road to see his love interest, a neighboring horse just past the junction.  I guess he also got out yesterday as well to see his lady love.  But, everyone is back home safe and sound.

I met a farmer walking his horse and two dogs, gorgeous, all of the animals.  Dogs are never on a leash out here, at least that I have seen.  And I usually see more dogs than people.  After I got home and banked the fire, I decided to make a soup.  I had some beets and kale that needed eating, as well as some sausages.  

I did something for the soup I've never done at home, boiled rice in a bag.  I also added potatoes. So, yea, pretty random.  All in all, it ended up pretty well.  I boiled the sausages and used their broth as the base for the soup.  A hearty, simple meal.  

It's interesting how quickly I've adjusted to life here in the cottage.  I love my 2+ hour rambles, most days.  I have barely had coffee, only tea for me.  I can start the fire and keep it going, I'm doing a lot of cooking and being at the cottage.  Steph's cats are my usual companions in the evening. They're down sleeping right now in the living room.  

Next week I'll have a car, so then I'll be getting out and about more.  But I wanted to take the first few weeks to really soak up the countryside and get used to things.  There is something about this place that is special and magical for me.    


Snow Day!!!

It was 4:35 pm here in Glendree when I started this post.  Now, it's almost 9:30pm.  I'm sure you have been dying to know what I've been up to for the last few days.  And currently, it's snowing.  Big, fluffy night time snowflakes. All I need now for my life to mimic "The Holiday" completely, is for a handsome stranger to show up at my door.  

On Sunday I ended up taking a walk the other way out the driveway, down the hill instead of up.  Now I know I prefer doing hills at the beginning of my walk, rather than at the end.  Ever the explorer, it took me about 2 hours to go round trip.  I tried to see how far towards Tulla I could make it.  Not that far.  Steph came out in her bathrobe, before I left, to let me know a group of dressage riders were going through the field right next door, about 50 of them.  I wish I would've seen them all, but I did get to see a few.  I caught a photo of one coming and going on my walk.  The farmers will open the gates to their fields so the riders can pass through.  The riders were in full dressage.  A lovely sight to behold.

That night at 8pm, Steph and I went to dinner at Peppers Bar in Feakle (www.peppersoffeakle.com) so I finally made it there!  We discussed all kinds of topics. I saw a sign for Mass Rock on my wanderings and asked her about it.  Apparently the Catholics would go and have mass at these rocks when under British rule.  The people would gather, and the rock would be big enough to hide the Priest if the British should come.  Once I get my car, I think we're going to drive up there because it's isolated and a bit too far to walk.  She also told me that not long ago, women had to quit working and give up their job once married.  Her mother had done that very thing.  

Steph is a wonderful host, with a soft, lilting accent, curly blond hair and quick movements.  She creates beautiful knitwear pieces under Saolre Irish Knit wear.  You can see them here: http://www.craftbay.ie/Shop/188/Saolr√©-unique-knit-design .  She popped over today to ask if I need anything while she was out tonight at her yoga class.  She is wonderful.  I am most likely going to bring one of her creations home with me, I cannot wait until I can see her studio in the house!  

And so I digress.  Back to Peppers Bar- I had a delicious baked salmon dinner, a pint of Smithwick's and Bailey's cheesecake.  The food was solid and delicious.  At about nine the trad (short for traditional) music session started. There were a group of musicians, and more kept coming to join in the fun.  Filled to the rafters with people, conversation and beer were flowing.  The bar is in the main room, eating is in a separate room.  Steph and I stayed for awhile listening and then headed home before we had too many pints.  The pub is exactly as you would wish and want it to be, filled with locals talking and guffawing over the day's doings.  Steph and I had a long conversation with one of the other ladies there about traveling and what I should do on my trip and which way I should go to Northern Ireland.  We sorted out I would travel the motorway up to Bushmills, and then come back round part of the Wild Atlantic Way, through Donegal and Sligo and Westport.  Once I get the car next week, I'm sure I'll be off to see everything.  I find myself quite content in the cottage, with no rush to get anywhere.