Ireland day 0011. Saturday 09 October 2021- Laytown
Although we had promised ourselves a couple of days off from the tedium of paperwork, first thing this morning I couldn’t resist looking into the process for getting an Irish driving licence – which you need if you want to drive here for more than a few weeks. Needless say you quickly get into the downward spiral of finding you need an address, for which you need a PPS number, for which you need an address, etc etc., before you can get one. So I abandoned the idea for the time being and concentrated my efforts on the mundane but more immediately pressing issue of washing my socks.
This is a 24-hour job, involving an extended cycle in the washing machine followed by a protracted period in the tumble drier then overnight on the clothes-horse. Even as I write this, the socks are still only just completing their third hour in the tumble drier, with many more hours of patient evaporation still to come.
At this point I should probably explain that the washing machine isn’t actually in the cottage – which is fortunate as the available floorspace isn’t much bigger than a postage stamp. Luckily, there is a lean-to nearby which accommodates the laundry facilities, whilst at the same time maintaining a safe distance between us and the endlessly churning machinery.
By the time all these hygiene factors had been managed, we felt in need of a change of scene, so headed off north east to the coast at Laytown. This turned out to be a beautiful spot, especially on a day like today when the wind dropped, the sun came out, and the temperatures rose. The horizon was razor-sharp, extending from Mourne in the north to Skerries in the south. We imagined we could even see the Isle of Man – but at over 100 miles / 160 km away, it seems unlikely. More probably just a fleeting glimpse of oceangoing hardware.
Laytown is best known for its horse-racing which, uniquely in the whole of Ireland and Britain, is actually held on the beach itself. Normally the races are held at the end of summer, but this year covid has pushed them back to November. We must make a diary note to try and attend, now that we are seasoned racegoers and experts at studying form. And besides, Val still has to recover the €5 she lost at Bellewstown a couple of weeks ago (can it really be that long?).
I need to draw to a close now to go and inspect the washing. Well, it’s a practical alternative to watching paint dry, I suppose. And then Val and I are going to start planning a Wicklow Way walk with some friends for spring next year (fingers crossed no more lockdowns!). Looking forward to it already!
Today’s photos (click to enlarge)