I’ve been working in Ireland again this week. I sailed over on Sunday, the day the Giro was due to arrive in the Dublin. I’d decided that it probably wouldn’t be a good idea to arrive in the city in the aftermath of the finish as I was likely to get tangled up in traffic, so instead booked on the fast ferry to Dun Laoghaire, which is well to the south of the city centre. As the boat arrives early afternoon I had some time to explore.
I decided to avoid the city centre and instead explore the coast south of the port, something I’d been intending to do for a while. And despite having got caught in one VERY heavy downpour and dodging a few others, it was a good decision. I parked up about half a mile from the port and walked along the shore over to Sandycove.
On the way the heavens opened and a gale started to blow. I dashed for cover but by then I was almost at my destination – the James Joyce museum, located in an old Martello Tower. So when it eased off I dashed the last hundred yards to the museum. It’s where Joyce lived for a while and where the first chapter of Ulysses is set.
We visited a few years ago when we were holidaying in Ireland. At that time we were charged an entrance fee, but it’s free entry now, which was a pleasant surprise. I did put some Euros in their donations bucket though. It’s an interesting little museum, both from the Joyce perspective but also because it’s interesting to get inside one of these towers which are dotted along the coast round Dublin. And there’s a good view from the top. The Joyce exhibits included a death mask, copies of his books – including a First Edition of Ulysses – photographs and pictures – some very good.
Near to the tower is the Forty Foot – a bathing pool in the sea. Originally men only (with no cozzies) it’s now used by both sexes.
There were some brave souls in the water which is probably never that warm even in the midst of summer.
After that I drove down the coast around Dalkey, stopping off to take photos and managing to avoid the rain. Just off the mainland there’s an island – Dalkey Island – which has another Martello Tower and a ruined building – probably an old chapel.
The weather kept changing – bright sunshine one minute, heavy rain the next.
All all along the coast there were examples of Georgian houses
Driving further down the coast road there were good views of the bay towards Bray head and Sugar Loaf mountain
Looking back towards Dalkey Island
By now it was late afternoon and more rain was coming in
People were abandoning the beach
It was time to get back in my car and head off to my hotel in Naas.