Close-knit Ennis

Do you remember my Slowly but surely series? Well, I have such a backlog of photos to share that you might easily say that I’ll take it up.

The town of Ennis, in the West of Ireland, is famous for its atmospheric medieval streets as it grew up around its 13th century friary that unfortunately was closed for restoration when I visited. From O’Connell Square, where my hotel was located, I explored the town in several directions but because the town centre was quite busy with the Saturday afternoon crowds, I tried to stay away from the main streets and walked along the narrow lanes and into the alleyways cutting over to the river.

Ennis 407x616 Close knit Ennis

Ennis 2 Close knit Ennis

Ennis 5 407x616 Close knit Ennis

Doctor Who always cheers me up!

Ennis 7 407x616 Close knit Ennis

Immediately before my visit (… almost two months ago!) some very severe weather had hit the entire West of Ireland and the river Fergus was rather fleetly-flowing.

Ennis 3 Close knit Ennis

Ennis 4 Close knit Ennis

It’s been a fortnight since I wrote a post, but I won’t say time flies or it seems just like yesterday bla bla bla because I’ve done so many things during these past few weeks that I’ve been counting the days till my four-day staycation which will start… tomorrow.

Have a great Easter weekend everyone!

Camera: Canon EOS 300
Film: Fujifilm CN 200
Location: Ennis, County Clare

Walk along

Whenever I can I walk along this long stretch of Dublin’s medieval walls complete with a protruding tower called Stanyhurst Tower.
James Stanyhurst was one of the boy hostages taken by Silken Thomas’s men during his rebellion.

Dublin Walls Stanyhurst Tower Walk along

Just across the street are six panels that commemorate the rebellion.

Silken Thomas plaques Walk along

Silken Thomas Rebellion Walk along

And here is the description of what happened:

In 1534, at the age of 21 years, “SILKEN THOMAS”, of The Fitzgeralds of Kildare, laid siege to Dublin Castle from this vicinity.
The rebellion failed and, he was executed in London together with all of his uncles, by order of Henry VIII.
The fall of the House of Kildare, was a major factor leading to the Tudor conquest of Ireland,
which shaped the country we know today.
These wall panels, by Grace Weir, commemorate the Siege of 1534.

I hope you enjoyed the history lesson.

Camera: Canon EOS 550D
Location: Dublin

Going out of my way

One morning in February I miraculously managed to leave home a little bit earlier than usual. I wanted to finish a roll I had started during a weekend in the West of Ireland (more on that later) so I took a little detour on my way to work. Yet I didn’t miss the place where I performed my essential daily ritual of… grabbing a coffee. Some thing will never change!

How could I not take advantage of such a clear sky?

Dublin Castle Going out of my way

Dublin Castle Gate 407x616 Going out of my way

Sheep Street Little Stairs Going out of my way

View over Dublin Castle 407x616 Going out of my way

Camera: Canon EOS 300
Film: Fujifilm CN 200
Location: Dublin

One of the reasons I decided to spend a weekend in Cobh, was its proximity to a village I had visited for the first time fifteen-ish years ago when, during a two-week holiday, I drove the length and breadth of Southern Ireland. I don’t feel like saying that the village of Kinsale was the most stunning place I stopped by that summer, but for some reason it stole my heart and I’ve been thinking of calling around again since.

When we arrived in the morning the rain had been hammering for a couple of hours and the light was non existent.

Kinsale Bookshop Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

Kinsale Market Square Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

Luckily the weather picked up in the afternoon and we were able to take a stroll between showers.
Just around the corner from the place where we stopped for lunch (the village is buzzing with nice cafés and lively pubs) stood this amazing church.
St. Multose Church, built in 1190, is where Prince Rupert proclaimed Charles II as King after hearing the news that Cromwell had had King Charles I executed in London.

Kinsale St Multose Church Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

In the meantime I had loaded the camera with a Kodak Portra 160. I am an optimist. It does not seem too much use being anything else.

Kinsale Door Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

Kinsale Guinness Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

Kinsale Cottages Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

And yes, there was a castle too.
Desmond Castle was built as an urban tower house by the Earl of Desmond in about 1500 and it has had many uses since then.

Kinsale Desmond Castle Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

Those of you who know me best won’t be surprised to read that I’m very critical with myself. But because today I’m in a bit of a celebratory mood, I’ll say that I’m very pleased with the shot below. I love it so much that I might even frame it and hang it up somewhere in my house!

Kinsale Reflections Kinsale, aka my three hundredth post

As I’ve already said, this is my three hundredth post. WOO-HOO! Thank you so much for reading and commenting. I’ve met so many beautiful, intelligent and interesting people thanks to this blog.

Camera: Hasselblad 500 C/M
Film: Lomography CN 800 + Kodak Portra 160
Location: Kinsale, Co. Cork

I’m not very keen on high ISO films because of the noise they produce, but experience has taught me that carrying a ISO 800 film in the bag while travelling around Ireland could really save your bacon, as it did for me this past January. Unless of course you bring a tripod, which I usually don’t do.

Cobh, which derives from the word haven, is a small maritime town in Cork’s harbour on the South coast of Ireland. The Cork’s fine natural harbour is the second largest in the world after Sydney and it has provided the town with a splendid history. Named Queenstown for a time after Queen Victoria, it was the final port of call for the Titanic in 1912 and an important British naval base until 1937.

Cobh County Cork Cobh, a haven of calm

Cobh JFK Park Cobh, a haven of calm

Cobh Harbour View Cobh, a haven of calm

The town’s hilly streets are dominated by the St Colman’s Cathedral, a Gothic Revival building which dates from 1868.

Cobh St Colman Cathedral Cobh, a haven of calm

Cobh Cathedral Interior Cobh, a haven of calm

Aren’t these colourful terraced houses pretty? It’s a pity the light was so pale on that day. They are known as the Deck of Cards.

Cobh Terraced Houses Cobh, a haven of calm

Colourful Cobh Cobh, a haven of calm

And this has to be the steepest street I’ve seen in Ireland so far. Dizzyingly steep, isn’t it?

Cobh Deck of Cards Cobh, a haven of calm

Camera: Hasselblad 500 C/M
Film: Lomography CN 800
Location: Cobh, Co. Cork

This winter the weather in Ireland has been quite stormy. Among the areas which have been particularly ravaged by it, there is County Cork where I spent a long weekend at the end of January.

As it was already dark outside when we arrived in the small maritime town of Cobh , the next morning I couldn’t wait for dawn to break. The wind had been howling all night long and this is the view I woke up to.

Waking up to a stormy morning Where the storm is o’er?

Camera: Hasselblad 500 C/M
Film: Kodak Portra 160
Location: Cobh, Co. Cork

Let me start by saying that I’m perfectly aware it doesn’t make much sense to start the tale of my weekend away from the last day, but as today I’m in the mood of sharing photos of ruined castles, here it is… Ferns Castle.

Driving through slashing rain back to Dublin from County Cork, we stopped in Ferns to stretch our legs. We literally had only five minutes of sunshine (oh, the wind in this part of the world can do wonders!) and we had to climb over a surrounding wall as the visitor centre is closed in winter, but I do believe we couldn’t have chosen a better place to take a break.

Ferns Castle Ferns Castle

Ferns Castle Wexford Ferns Castle

Ferns Castle Tower Ferns Castle

Once upon a time Ferns Castle – built in the 13th century, possibly by William, Earl Marshall – formed a square, with large corner towers. Although only half of the castle now remains, the most complete tower contains a fine circular chapel, several original fireplaces and a vaulted basement, which I didn’t visit because, as I said, the castle was closed to visitors. The castle walls and the surrounding rock-cut ditch are long gone. Can you imagine me going over those?

Camera: Hasselblad 500 C/M
Film: Kodak Portra 160
Location: Ferns, Co. Wexford

Purple winter sunset

For those who are wondering about the rolling tumbleweeds around here of late, I’ve been uber busy with a heritage project I’ve been working on since January.
Although I’ve managed to take several photographs during the past few weeks, I’m afraid most of them may bore you stiff. Remains of Hiberno-Norse and Anglo-Norman Dublin, anyone? But it hasn’t been only work and no play, and I’ve recently spent a weekend in County Cork (in Southwestern Ireland) where, despite the nasty storm I was caught in, I shot no less than two rolls. Please bear with me while I find the time to organize them.

Munich Winter Sunset Purple winter sunset

PS: I may not be commenting on others blogs as often as I used to, but I’m still reading you!

Camera: Canon EOS 300
Film: Fujichrome Provia 400X
Location: Munich, Germany