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Thursday, November 29, 2007

IRELAND--DAY 7

Today is a big travel day. We leave Killarney and visit Limerick and Galway on our way to Sligo. One essential stop as a sign of Ireland’s beauty and power is the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare. No one visiting Ireland should miss this.

I’ve been to the Cliffs of Moher before, but this second visit does nothing to preclude my drawing a quick breath in awe. Rising 700 feet high above the Atlantic, their sheer height guards and warns interlopers of this land. It’s a visual statement: “Enter at your own risk.” The sun is over our shoulders, and the light makes the cliffs appear menacing and formidable. On the spot where the cliffs reach their maximum height high above the water rises the sentry, O’Brien’s Tower. I think of early would-be invaders and cringe. Meanwhile cattle peacefully graze nearby, and looking inland we see calm and sprawling lakes. It’s quite a dramatic moment and very paradoxical.

On to Galway Bay where, after a city tour, we have time to roam the lovely pedestrian mall of this college and tourist town. Youth is at the forefront here, and the pubs and shops reflect their interests and vitality. The atmosphere here is different from Dublin’s youth. This is much more laid back, much more beautiful. Hopefully my photos will give you a “taste.”
Click to play Galway, Ireland
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By the way, the tour group is really a unit, and we will be in touch with our new Saskatchewan friends Aggie and Owen, our New Zealand friends, Eric and Claire, and our Michigan friends, Lorraine and Carl.


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