The Haunting…

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With great longing for home and sadness of leaving, I made the journey back from Connemara today.

As I passed Kylemore Abbey, the clouds began a hasty descent, down over the mountains of the pass…

I longed for home, but was mesmerized by the play of light and mist that is a magical part of the landscape of the West of Ireland.

A landscape that haunts one forever…


Their cottage is surrounded by the most ethereal  play of light, being near the shoreline and surrounded by mountains.


I first met Terri and Lol when they visited Bealtaine Cottage to learn more about Permaculture and quickly bonded in a deep friendship.


I meet so many wonderful people here at Bealtaine and am often invited to visit with them, though rarely take the time to do so…

I’m glad I made this journey into the hauntingly beautiful land of Connemara…the images will inspire dreams for many nights ahead in Winter.

www.bealtainecottage.com 051The past three days in Connemara have inspired me in many ways.

I met some fine people and talked about wine making and permaculture.

www.bealtainecottage.com 060Connaught, the province of Ireland where Connemara lies, has, historically, been associated with immense poverty and harsh living conditions, though its beauty has kept it populated, albeit sparsely in parts.

Many Irish have emigrated from here, down through the centuries, especially so during the Great Famine.

 

www.bealtainecottage.com 014Yesterday morning, I walked in the gardens as the sun rose, and watched the mist slowly lift from the fields, that run down to the shoreline.

www.bealtainecottage.com 017Terri and Lol have planted lots of Willow, as a wind break and are developing a sustainable smallholding around their cottage.

www.bealtainecottage.com 029Living this close to the mighty Atlantic Ocean, the land is swept by salt-winds and gales, that roar in over thousands of miles of turbulent sea, making landfall, with all the power and destruction only those winds can carry.

The soil is scraped off rock and carried on the winds, to fill crevice and glen.

Even the cows have learned to forage and climb like mountain goats in search of food!

This beautiful creature stood atop the rocks watching the sun rise, as I walked in my dressing gown around the cottage gardens.

www.bealtainecottage.com 030In the distance, my little camera picked out the walls of ancient cottages, abandoned to the elements of sea, rain, wind and sun, casting imaginary sounds of past lives upon the mist that lifted heavenwards, in the warm morning air.

www.bealtainecottage.com 059As I drove towards home, leaving this magically, evocative landscape behind me, the sheer beauty of Connemara urged me to stop… and take one last image to share with you…

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A Life in the Country ~ Today at Bealtaine Cottage

Missy. Staring wisely through her beautiful cat’s eyes. Such wisdom in that little head…  

Cats can work out mathematically the exact place to sit that will cause most
inconvenience.  ~Pam Brown   (Indeed…sitting in my seat, I do believe)!

A catless writer is almost inconceivable.  It’s a perverse taste, really, since
it would be easier to write with a herd of buffalo in the room than even one
cat; they make nests in the notes and bite the end of the pen and walk on the
typewriter keys.  ~Barbara Holland

I bought this painting recently, having been drawn towards it and virtually hypnotised into the purchase…it is old and evokes a sense of 1950’s rural Ireland…and one of my favourite authors wrote expansively about this time…Edna O’Brien.

 Every
artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his
pictures.  ~Henry Ward Beecher

Jack looks over at Missy the cat…yes, Jack, keep watching…don’t take your eyes off her! 

There has never been a cat
Who couldn’t calm me down
By walking
slowly
Past my chair.
~Rod McKuen

History is a cyclic poem written by Time upon the memories of man.  ~Percy
Bysshe Shelley

Today I went for a lovely, long walk, down in the old park around what was an ancient house by Lough Key. This is the old stable block as seen through the portcullis…

If one could make alive again for other people some cobwebbed skein of old dead
intrigues and breathe breath and character into dead names and stiff portraits. 
That is history to me!  ~George Macaulay Trevelyan

This is the old family church near where the old house once stood…the roof has gone and the shell of the beautiful old building stands alone…