Near to the Dingle Peninsula & the good weather makes the Irish sun crazy.
July 9-12, 1999:
We got to park our van in front of Kathleen's friend Ann's house for an extended weekend in Fenit (say fee-nit). And we parked ourselves in her welcoming home.
We had the chance to meet her next door neighbors and share in their backyard adventures. Then we shared our adventures with them.
The weekend we were there the weather turned bright and hot. The locals went immediately sun-crazy and rushed into the ultraviolet rays like mosquitoes to a zapper.
Ruth MacDonnell and Kate Counihan hang out at Mike's beach shop after their day sailing in the annual WIORA race (West Ireland Offshore Racing Association). Hey girls, click here to e-mail us! Notice how their skin radiates from the days sun.
On our way to the Dingle Peninsula, we were side tracked by a sign that said "Burial Ground". So as you may've picked up, we thought it was a site of pre-historic tombs. Turned out it was a cemetery that is "full" and no longer taking any more 'clients.' We decided to check it out and got quite the spooky experience.
Since there's no new burials, there's no money for keeping it up. Weeds overgrow everything like a scene from a B horror flick. Many of the graves have damage like this one here.
Of course, just like anyone else, Henry had to investigate...
and this is what he saw. Six feet down -- slippers sticking up through the earth. The coffin had a brass handle showing.
Even though the place was pretty deserted, we chanced to meet some locals who were visiting one of their buried uncles. They explained to us why the graves were prone to the kind of damage we'd seen. The graves are like small cellars with brick or stone walls underground. They're covered with cement or stone slats so the grave can be uncovered so that more relatives (who die later) can be buried with their already departed loved ones.
If a married daughter dies, her family usually takes her body to their gravesite to prevent her being buried with a potential second wife in her surviving husband's family grave.
The drive around the Dingle Peninsula took us about three hours. Green hillsides, blue misty horizons, small stony towns and wind that can yank your teeth out. It's one of the most beautiful and 'Irish' looking places in Ireland.
While we were there, the clouds moved in over the mountains as if they'd spilled from some giant's evil cauldron.
Overlooking the ocean one finds the piety of the Irish.
Overlooking the parking lot, one finds the perversity of an Irish name.
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