Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Galway

Sunday was rainy, and I was tempted to stay curled up on the comfy couch with my coffee and book all day. But it wouldn't do to go to Galway and not see Galway.  Since we no longer had a car and our Airbnb rental was somewhat further from the city center than I realized, we took the bus into town, which was very easy.

Galway is much smaller than Dublin or Cork-- about 75,000 people, according to Wikepedia. It has a large pedestrianized area crammed with shops, pubs, and cafes. We wandered aimlessly for a bit, poking into the shops, and then looked at Lynch's Castle, an imposing medieval building right in the center of town.  We also saw St. Nicholas' Church, the Galway Cathedral, and walked to Nora Barnacle's house, which was closed.  (Nora Barnacle was James Joyce's wife.)  We walked for awhile along the Corrib River, which seemed very high and has a rushing current.  Some people we met in a pub assured us that if we kept walking up the river, the current would slow and we'd get to the spot where the rowing crews were out for practice.  As former rowers, Jon and I were both keen to see this, but a lashing rain started up and Jon's back was killing him so we turned back and stopped into a cafe for a late lunch and coffee and caught the bus back to Salthill.

We didn't see as much of Galway as I'd wanted to, partly because of the weather, but also because I accidentally booked only two nights here, rather than three as I'd originally intended.  We really only had one full day to explore.

After resting at home for a bit, we walked back to the Salthill promenade and walked along Galway Bay.  There's a beach and a forbidding-looking diving tower.  The temperature was in the fifties, with a brisk wind, but there were some swimmers at the tower.  I saw a woman in a bikini climb down the steps and go out for a brief swim.  There's a sheltered wall near the tower, where people change clothes.  It seems to be a thing to take a quick dip from the tower and then get dressed and go home.  It must be exhilarating!  Jon stuck his feet in the water and estimated that the water temperature was in the fifties.

Me in front of Nora Barnacle's house


A Galway streetscape


Blackrock diving tower--do you see the swimmer to the left?

2 comments:

  1. How delightful to visit Galway and to see its castle and churches and Nora Barnacle's home (even if closed).

    ReplyDelete
  2. It sounds like a nice, peaceful, visit. I think it's so interesting how you get used to doing things in the rain in the UK and Ireland. Many places in the US only have rain a few times a month (often a LOT of it), so we get used to thinking of those as "indoor" days. But I know that in the Scotland and England, it rained almost every day we were there. It was a very gentle rain, that didn't really get much in your way of going out and about, but it's a different mindset.

    ReplyDelete