Ireland day 0285. Sunday 10 July 2022- Memorial

Ireland day 0285. Sunday 10 July 2022- Memorial
Today’s summary Leisurely breakfast then train and Luas into Dublin for short walk in the warm sunshine through Kilmainham, Memorial and Phoenix parks with the DWC. It was the National Day of Commemoration today so watched a brief but dramatic low altitude fly past by the Air Corps on the way to the start. Drinks in Nancy Hands pub at end.
Today’s weather Warm dry and sunny all day. Light easterly breeze. About 22C.
Today’s overview location
(The blue mark shows the location of our route)
Close-up location
(The green line shows where we walked)
(Click button below to download GPX of today’s walk as recorded, or see interactive map at bottom with elevations corrected):
Kilmainham to Phoenix DWC
Commentary

Well it looks like that the “good weather that will come next week” has arrived a couple of days early, as today brought lots of sunshine, a warm breeze, and dry conditions. And here in Dublin there were no insects buzzing around to mar the summery bliss. A truly remarkable day which reminds you what warm weather can actually be like.

Fortunately there was a Sunday walk organised by the Walking Club today. Only a short, city, walk but just perfect for the conditions. As it happened, the walk linked up some of my favourite green spaces in Dublin – Kilmainham Hospital formal gardens, the war memorial gardens down by the Liffey, and Phoenix Park. And as the meeting time wasn’t until noon, it meant that I didn’t have to rush to get up, which made it even better still.

After making lunch and having a quick breakfast, I made way down to the station to get the train into Dublin. As luck would(n’t) have it, the DART was delayed by a Belfast to Dublin Enterprise train which for some reason today decided to stop at Malahide and block the southbound platform. Anyway after a ten minute delay we were away and heading into town. Though I was a bit anxious about the time as I had left it until the last minute to catch the train and I knew even if everything worked like clockwork, I was cutting it fine to get to the meeting point at Heuston for noon.

Today is the annual National Day of Commemoration, which honours Irishmen and Irishwomen who have died in past wars or on service with the United Nations. It’s an important date in the Irish calendar and one of the main ceremonies was being held at the National Museum at Collins Barracks, and attended by the President and Taoiseach as well as both houses of the Oireachtas.

This ceremony coincided with my Luas journey to Heuston from Connolly, which goes right in front of the Collins barracks. It took me a while to work out what was going on when the Luas stopped unaccountably at Smithfield – the station before Collins Barracks – and showed no sign of moving.

Then, when three aircraft of the Air Corps buzzed overhead, Red Arrows-style, I finally twigged what was happening, and I realised that the delay was likely to be protracted. It was already noon by then, so I decided to cut my losses and jump out of the Luas and walk the last km or so to Heuston.

I eventually arrived at the meeting point 15 minutes late, but fortunately many of the others were delayed for the same reason so nothing was missed. Todays route was mostly familiar from walks that Val and I had done in the area, but it was good today not to be hurried along by cold weather, and to be able to take our time to admire the gardens. And of course to chat.

Even though it’s only a week since we last met, there always seems to be a lot of news to catch up on. Hot topic today was Dublin’s prospects in the GAA football match with Kerry in the All-Ireland semi final at Croke Park this afternoon (in the end Kerry won 1-14 to 1-13) and although I really have no idea what is going on in what is possibly the world’s most complicated game, it was fascinating to get club members’ perspectives on who was most likely to win.

The various gardens we walked though were full of people relaxing and enjoying the weekend sunshine. The roses especially were looking stunning – Irish roses must surely be some of the finest in the world – but all too soon we were back at the entrance to Phoenix Park and the end of the walk.

But rather than finish there and then, a sub group of us sloped off to Nancy Hands pub on Parkgate St for a refreshing pint and the chance to watch the Dublin-Kerry match on the TV. If you’ve never watched a GAA match, I can definitely recommend it – seems to combine rugby, soccer and basketball all in one game. Gripping.

By this stage, time was getting on so I decided to make a move and start heading back to Connolly for the train to Malahide. But not before I seem to have been persuaded to lead a walk round Termonfeckin and Clogher Head later this year. I’ll need to do a recce sometime in the next few days to see if it’s actually going to be feasible. It’s amazing what you will agree to do after a pint of Guinness.

Anyway now I’m back in Malahide, I need to start a bit of tidying up in the flat. Val’s back tomorrow and I do need to project at least a semblance of order rather than the slightly chaotic state of semi-bachelorhood that the place has descended into while I’ve been left to my own devices. Ok hoover, here I come.

 

Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

All too brief flypast of the Air Corps over the Liffey at Noon today.  Passion flower (Passiflora caerulea) growing abundantly on a south facing wall in the Hospital Gardens.  The nearby formal gardens are shown in the banner image at the top, with the Hospital in the background
Garden House in the Hospital Gardens, carefully restored by the OPW On the Islandbridge crossing from the Memorial Gardens over to Phoenix Park.   This was the first time I’d crossed the Liffey here – previously I’ve usually gone over at Chapelizod, about 3km / 2mi upstream
Impressive cardoons (Cynara cardunculus) exploding into exotic bloom in Phoenix Park.   Cardoons are closely related to artichokes (Cynara scolymus) and they are also edible.  Though with cardoons you eat the stems and leaves whereas with artichokes you eat the flowers Journeys end.   Suitable accompaniment to the GAA match on the TV in Nancy Hands’ pub
In the Irish National War Memorial Gardens, down by the Liffey.   Wreaths laid this morning as part of the ceremonies for the National Day of Commemoration
Interactive map

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

Total distance: 5852 m
Max elevation: 31 m
Min elevation: 4 m
Total climbing: 111 m
Total descent: -110 m
Total time: 03:15:14
Download file: Kilmainham And Phoenix compressed corrected.gpx

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