photos, sligo

Keeping it local

 

This year I’ve made a conscience effort to try to keep my business locally. The calendars, as you know, contain photos all taken in County Sligo. So in taking the photos I’ve had to put petrol in my car and quite often had lunch or coffee where ever I’ve happened to be. All supporting local businesses.

Printfix in Sligo printed the calendars for me. I’m delighted with the quality and the service. From my first meeting with Caitriona, complete with a cuppa, to the finished result she has gone above and beyond my expectations.

From grabbing the calendars from them and running down the hill to deliver them to Liber and the Yeats Memorial Building. From buying the envelopes to post overseas in Clever Office or Sligo Office Suppies. Withdrawing the money from Sligo Credit Union, heading to the post office to post them. It’s all done locally.

Even selling on Etsy – I can sit at my kitchen table with my doggos at my feet and manage my customers. There’s a big shift now for remote working and I can see why. It makes life so much easier, I can fit in Jono’s appointments around much easier and work when I want to work.

If you are interested in finding out more about Grow remote and the event they have at the end of September you can click here.

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photos, Travel

Following the sun

I woke up at 5am yesterday morning and I was wide away so off I headed exploring…although this time I did wait until after 6am because I really don’t like walking in the dark.

I was going to head up Knocknarea but to be honest my legs haven’t recovered from the Glencar walk yet so I wanted to go a bit easier on myself. So as I was driving I decided to follow the sun and it took me to Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery.

Carrowmore is one of the oldest cemeteries in Ireland and is the largest one. It was magical watching the sun rise over these ancient stones and wondering about life as it would have been all those years ago.

It was the beginning of a very special day and I do feel that times are changing. The birds were singing and throughout the day I noticed more butterflies than I’d noticed for the whole of the summer. I also noticed white feathers, hundreds of them. Where ever I walked a feather was near. I found it very reassuring, like someone was watching out for me and telling me they were near.

I love these early mornings. Greeting the day before the rest of the world wakes up. Enjoying the silence and happy seeing life through my lens. I hope you like the photos.

photos, sligo

In the shadow of a giant

Quite a few weeks ago I was up at some daft hour due to insomnia and decided to go off walking. It was a beautiful morning, the sun was beginning to rise and I drove to the Isle of Innisfree.

From there I walked from Innisfree to Slish Wood and back again. This is part of the Sligo Way Walk which runs from Lough Talt just outside Tubbercurry and finishes in Dromahair, Co. Leitrim.  The whole walk is 80km and I don’t think I’d ever consider attempting it but I like the fact that you can break it up into sections.

At Innisfree you follow the signs with the little yellow walking men/women. I had to cross a couple of styles and walk through some farm land at the start, I had a welcoming committee!

Just a short way into the walk there are the boardwalks and I always wondered why they were there and why people couldn’t just walk on the land. After stepping off the wood I quickly realised why they are there as my foot went sinking into the marsh! I lost my shoe for a while and ended up knee deep in mud! I did get my shoe back after some tugging!

The scenery up there is just stunning. The purple rhododendrons and the blue of Lough Gill with the Sleeping Giant providing a backdrop. It’s so easy to see why the poet WB Yeats was so inspired by this beautiful landscape. The photo above was featured by Discover Ireland on Twitter 🙂

The dew was sparkling in the morning sun and when the camera caught the light and the water droplets I was treated to a display of rainbows. It was just so peaceful and breathtaking.

On the way back to Innisfree I wandered through the forest and thought I’d be clever and take a short cut. Big mistake when I came up against a barbed wire fence but I was more or less back so I paddled through Lough Gill – it got rid of most of the mud anyway – although I was squelching when I reached dry land. I took a moment to look at the lake and dry off a bit and I saw what I thought was a lump of wood until I saw it jump into the water. It was an otter! The first one I’ve seen one in the wild, it moved too quickly for me to get a photo of it.

If you get a chance and are looking for a beautiful walk, I’d really recommend this one. Just stick to the path though.

 

photos, sligo

The Long Way Home

I was in Tubbercurry on Friday and instead of taking the normal main road home I decided to take a bit of a detour. I headed up towards Lough Easkey – this is one of my favourite places in Sligo. If you haven’t been there yet it’s well worth a visit.

Take the road out of Tubbercurry heading to Ballina and you’ll see a sign for Lough Easkey on the right. It’s a bit of a long drive with narrow roads – not for the faint hearted in places but so worth it.

You will drive alongside the Owenaher River which has a stunning waterfall. I parked at the top and hopped over the wall, well I say hopped – I clambered….I won’t mention my wet backside – whoops I just did. I sat of the rocks and watched the water rushing. The smell of coconut from the gorse bushes made me feel like I was in an exotic country. I’m always blown away by the beauty we have here in Sligo. My photos really don’t do it justice.

Back in the car on the next stop was Masshill. This is an outdoor place of worship and well worth a visit. There’s also an old school house dating back to 1910. I met up with the farmer and he let me go and look at it as it’s on his land. He told me his mother used to go to the school and that it was only open for a short amount of time. It’s these stories I’d love to explore more of, finding out the local tales behind the places. I just found one of the Duchas site about treasure being at Masshill – I wonder if it’s still there….

As I carried on driving I saw chickens crossing the road – no idea why they crossed 😉

There were turf bogs and ruins as I drove into what felt like the wilderness but really is just around 8 miles from the nearest town.

I saw the Ox Mountain Adventure Camp which you can also stay in. Imagine being out in this part of the world? Talk about getting away from it all.

There were also sheep all over the place, one of them tried to hitch a lift!  When I got to Lough Easkey I made friends with one of the locals, it’s unusual for the sheep to come up to you but this one did. As I walked back to the car I was being followed….maybe I look like a sheep!

What a journey home – just magic. I might take the long way home more often.