Monday, November 30, 2009

I had to take a trip to Castletownbere on the Beara peninsula today, not a great hardship as it was such a beautiful day, and it's a lovely drive. You have to go through the Killarney National Park, and through the mountains to Kenmare and then onto Glengariff, then onto the Beara peninsula. The first photo is of the one of the lakes near Killarney, then Castletownbere, Glengariff, and the last two are from Ladies View in the Killarney National Park. I think the photos say it all!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

It looks like winter has arrived; a big surprise looking out at the tops mountains covered in white stuff on Saturday morning. It also coincided with Santa Claus arriving at Ballyseedy garden centre ( aka the Crystal Palace ) by helicopter. Clever chap also seemed to turn up at numerous other locations simultaneously.....Anyway, Rachel and Caitlin joined Laura, Phil and their respective crews to greet him, and everyone got very excited. I sneaked out for a quick surf at Gowlane - cold, but not that cold yet, and then round to Laura's for dinner - delicious, thankyou. Good luck to Mark today in the Norwich half marathon.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A very sad few days...our good friend, Fintan, lost his life whilst out windsurfing at Banna strand this Saturday. He was eventually found by his long time friend, Graham, who managed to sum up what went on that day. Anyone who knew Fintan would confirm that he was one of the nicest guys you could ever hope to meet, an avid and accomplished windsurfer, and a loving father and husband - our hearts go out to Catriona, Laura and all the rest of his family. It was always a pleasure to see him at the beach, and his infectious enthusiasm added to the enjoyment of a session on the water. He will be greatly missed....
I have to say well done to Colin, Hannes, Will and Graham, and all the rescue services and locals who joined in the search - a tough job.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A busy few days around here, especially for Rachel: childcare meetings one evening, art class the next, then community power down training, and then off to Siamsa Tire to see Madame Silk. I do sometimes see her at weekends...The weather has definitely changed as well - wind, rain and gales, though on the positive side, we managed a great afternoons windsurfing at Stradbally on Sunday, and as a bonus, dinner at Garry and Suzannes place!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

We've just returned from a great weekend in Lahinch, County Clare, visiting Brian and Jenny ( and also celebrating my birthday! ) They moved into a lovely place overlooking Lahinch at the end of the summer and are now well settled. I went out with Brian for a windsurf at Liscannor on Saturday which was great - logo high and cross shore, although it was starboard tack, and I was pretty out of practice ! Brian cooked a mean curry for dinner: we were joined by Dan, and even managed to slip out for a couple of beers and watched the end the Rugby - Wales vs. New Zealand - in a pub in Milltown Malbay that had a load of Welshmen in it! Had a good look around the surf spots on Sunday, and ended up back in Lahinch for a quick session. Monday was unfortunately extremely wet, but we went for a drive up to the Burren, and looked around Doolin, before ending up with a quick windsurf at Fanore, small waves, but fun, a lovely spot. I was out on my own as Brian was busy with the latest edition of Windsurfer International Magazine. It was great to see Brian and co, and Caitlin loved seeing Bay, Flynn and Clover again ( all very well behaved! ) Didn't get a chance to take many pictures as we left the camera at home, so there's only one above of the soggy Burren!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Caitlin is now completely Halloweened out! She had a party at preschool, followed by another one in the afternoon as she was in the creche ( with Rachel and I both busy ) and then off to Jess's party in the evening - Phil had decorated the house, shed and caravan, so everything looked very spooky, and had persuaded Pauline to dress up as a witch and scare all the kids! We all then went to Les and Paulines house for their annual Halloween party - this seems more popular than ever, with a great turn out and fantastic costumes. It also looks like Autumn ( or even Winter ) has arrived with a bang: there have been gale force winds for a couple of days, so I managed a quick windsurf at Fermoyle yesterday, and then at Shitties today. The wind had turned NNW, and the swell in Brandon Bay was huge. Jamie, Hugh, Niall, Rob and Caroline were out, and a couple of french guys, then Andy and Ryan on kites. The waves were well over mast high, with swell probably double mast high. The picture doesn't really show this too well, but when you got out the back, you realised the amount of water moving around. The weekend is forecast to have nine metre swell!!