Ireland day 0189. Tuesday 05 April 2022- Low-key

Ireland day 0189. Tuesday 05 April 2022- Low-key
Today’s summary A low-key interlude after the last three hectic days.   Cleaning, shopping, cooking, catching up with friends and Spanish class in the evening.   Nice to have some down time – though Val was back at work so her feet barely had time to touch the ground
Today’s weather Dull but mostly dry.   A little drizzle in the evening.   Mild westerly wind.  About 12C
Today’s overview location
(The blue mark shows the location of my route)
Close-up location
(The green line shows where I walked)
(Click button below to download GPX of today’s walk as recorded, or see interactive map at bottom with elevations corrected):
Malahide round the houses

Today was quite a quiet day, with not a lot to say, so I won’t waste a lot of time time not saying it.

In summary, after the rushing about of the last three days – which packed in more than I would normally achieve in a month before we came here – we both felt a little down-time would be called for today.   Unfortunately for Val, she had to go back to work this morning (her shift is three-days-on-three-days-off, so her days off move 24 hours earlier every week), so I was left to complete the household chores.   First off was the washing.   Even though there are only two of us, we still seem to accumulate mountains of the stuff so much of the morning was taken up processing multiple loads through the washing machine.

Then the hoover needed to come out to remove the remains of Lugnaquilla and Sliabh na bClogh which had found their way onto our floor, and after that, once again the bins had to be emptied.   Next it was time to prepare lunches, do the shopping and start getting dinner ready (it’s cod fillets and peas with cabbage, olive and onion potato cakes followed by rhubarb tonight).   Finally I spent three hours on video calls to friends in the UK and the US – really good to keep in touch with everyone, even though they are so far away.   Makes the world feel like it’s a very small place and when you’re living in foreign climes like we are, it’s nice to be able to maintain these touch-points with your former life.

Finally, I managed to get out and have a short canter round some of my favourite corners of Malahide.   It was an enjoyable leg-stretch; quite short but for once, even though it was windy, it was quite mild.   But what has been striking me more and more lately is just how dry everywhere is.   The mud at the side of the pavements is cracking up, and I’m sure that if the rain doesn’t come soon, the grass will stop growing.   At a time when food supplies in general are imperilled by the global political situation, I’d have thought that a domestic drought would be just about the last thing the British Isles could do with right now.

Once Val had returned from work and the fish dinner had been polished off, it was time to head down to Portmarnock college for my Spanish lesson.   I do enjoy these classes, though I still find them very difficult.   Still, as an American politician once said: we do these things “Not because they are easy, but because they are hard“.   A metaphor for the last few months as a whole, really.


Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

Malahide going about its daily business this afternoon.   The lollipop lady in the background reminds me of a friend I had back in my youth who, when asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, always replied that he wanted to be a lollipop man.   Mainly on the basis that they didn’t start work until they were 65.    Equisetum (Mare’s-tail fern) just poking its head up into spring 2022
I really enjoy the walk up Paddy’s Hill because it’s all grassy fields until you pop over the brow of the hill and a distant vista of the sea suddenly opens up before you. Down on what I call Lithostrotion beach – mostly submerged today as the tide was high.   For the very first time since we got here, the sea didn’t look absolutely repellent and I could imagine that if the temperature were twenty or thirty degrees higher, it might actually be acceptable to consider swimming in it.   I never thought that I would even think that, so quite a Damascene moment
Light-bellied Brent Geese still evident in Malahide estuary.   They will be starting their epic migrations, back to the high Canadian Arctic, any day now.   We will see them again when they return here in October The Malahide Cows “moo-ved” in (to quote the Fingal Independent) to the field at the bottom of Robswall Green in late 2013.   You can see them featured in the banner image at the top of this blog.   They were installed to promote biodiversity but seem to to have developed a bit of a cult following.   They get a five star rating on google reviews, and even have their own website.   Though it isn’t very informative as all it says is “Moo moo moo”.
An abiding characteristic of Spring 2022 has been the very dry weather.   It’s only early April and the ground is cracking up already
Interactive map

(Elevations corrected at  GPS Visualizer: Assign DEM elevation data to coordinates )

Total distance: 8035 m
Max elevation: 37 m
Min elevation: 1 m
Total climbing: 117 m
Total descent: -115 m
Total time: 01:36:25
Download file: Round The Houses corrected.gpx

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