Friday, June 30, 2017

Lough Corrib

Captain of the boat I caught out of Galway taking us out onto Lough Corrib.

"Lough Corrib . . . is the largest lake in Ireland and second largest on the island of Ireland (after Lough Neagh). It covers 176 km² and lies mostly in County Galway with a small area of its northeast corner in County Mayo . . . .

William Wilde, father of Oscar Wilde wrote a book about the lake, first published in 1867. He built a summerhouse on the banks of the lake, called Moytura House.

Lough Corrib was designated a Ramsar site on 16 June 1996. It has also been designated a Special Area of Conservation" (Wikipedia).

Thursday, June 29, 2017

River Corrib

"The River Corrib . . . in the west of Ireland flows from Lough Corrib through Galway to Galway Bay. The river is among the shortest in Europe, with only a length of six kilometres from the lough to the Atlantic. It is popular with local whitewater kayakers as well as several rowing clubs and pleasure craft. The depth of this river reaches up to 94 feet" (Wikipedia).

Tuesday, June 27, 2017


"The Vega Company was a musical instrument manufacturer that started operations in Boston, Massachusetts in 1881. The company began under Swedish-born Julius Nelson, his brother Carl, and a group of associates that included John Pahn and John Swenson. The founders had previously worked for a guitar shop run by Pehr Anderberg that made instruments for John C. Haynes, another Boston musical instrument company. Nelson had served as foreman of guitar and mandolin manufacturing at Anderberg's shop. Subsequently, Julius and Carl Nelson bought out the other founding associates and established the Vega company. . . .

Perhaps the most visible Vega instrument in the 1950s and 60s was the long neck 5-string banjo designed and used by folk singer Pete Seeger, and later by several folk groups like the Kingston Trio and The Limeliters" (Wikipedia).

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Top to Bottom


Thanks for sharing my visit to the Collegiate Church of St. Nicholas of Myra.

It's so very rare that we in the States get to see buildings that have stood for so long. 

Beginning tomorrow, I'll return briefly to the streets of Galway before heading out onto one of Ireland's most beautiful rivers.

Saturday, June 24, 2017


Church of St. Nicholas, Galway

"In 1912, a new organ was ordered from Norman & Beard of Norwich for the sum of £908, half of which was the gift of Mr Andrew Carnegie. A small amount of pipework was incorporated from the old Walker instrument.

This instrument has had many repairs and overhauls (with major work carried out in 1945, 1957-9, 1963, 1977-8 and 1982), during which most of the original tubular pneumatic actions were discarded in favour of electro-pneumatic replacements" (

Monday, June 19, 2017

Collegiate Church

"The Collegiate Church of St. Nicholas is a medieval church building in Galway, Ireland. It is a collegiate church and the parish church of St. Nicholas' Church of Ireland parish, which covers Galway city. It was founded in 1320 and dedicated to Saint Nicholas of Myra, the patron saint of seafarers, in recognition of Galway's status as a port. The monumental work of Irish geneaology, the Leabhar na nGenealach was produced here in 1650 by Duḃaltaċ MacḞirḃisiġ (Dubhaltach MacFhirbhisigh)" (Wikipedia).

Sunday, June 18, 2017

St. Nicholas

Now from the Galway Whiskey Trail to the Collegiate Church of St. Nicholas where, according to legend, Christopher Columbus once worshipped.

The church now sees use by two orthodox congregations as well as the Church of Ireland.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Irish Whiskey

I don't think I've ever had so much as a dram of whiskey in my life or ever will, but Galway is virtually awash in the stuff. 

What I like are all the shapes and colors. :-)

"Irish whiskey (Irish: Fuisce or uisce beatha) is whiskey made on the island of Ireland.

The word "whiskey" is an Anglicisation of the first word in the Gaelic phrase, uisce betha, meaning "water of life" (modern Irish: uisce beatha, Scottish: uisge beatha and Manx: ushtey bea). The phrase was a translation of the Latin term aqua vitae, which was commonly used to describe distilled spirits during the Middle Ages.

Peat is rarely used in the malting process, so that Irish whiskey has a smoother finish as opposed to the smoky, earthy overtones common to some Scotches. There are notable exceptions to these rules in both countries; an example is Connemara peated Irish malt (double distilled) whiskey from the Cooley Distillery in Riverstown, Cooley, County Louth.

Irish whiskey was once the most popular spirit in the world, though a long period of decline from the late 19th century onwards greatly damaged the industry. So much so that although Ireland boasted over 30 distilleries in the 1890s, a century later, this number had fallen to just three. However, Irish whiskey has seen a great resurgence in popularity since the late twentieth century, and has been the fastest growing spirit in the world every year since 1990. With exports growing by over 15% per annum in recent years, existing distilleries have been expanded and a number of new distilleries constructed. As of early 2017, Ireland now has sixteen distilleries in operation, with at least a further fourteen in the planning stages. However, only five of these have been operating long enough to have products sufficiently aged for sale, and only one of these was operating prior to 1975" (Wikipedia).

Friday, June 16, 2017


Poked my head into this shop for just a minute and the shopkeeper was kind enough to let me photograph these fine examples of a traditional Irish instrument.

"The bodhrán. . . is an Irish frame drum ranging from 25 to 65 cm (10 to 26 in) in diameter, with most drums measuring 35 to 45 cm (14 to 18 in). The sides of the drum are 9 to 20 cm ( 3 1⁄2 to 8 in) deep. A goatskin head is tacked to one side (synthetic heads or other animal skins are sometimes used). The other side is open-ended for one hand to be placed against the inside of the drum head to control the pitch and timbre." (Wikipedia)."

Thursday, June 15, 2017


One of my first missions upon arriving in Galway was to set out on foot and to get oriented.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017


It had been many years since I last set foot in Ireland and even then for only a brief stopover in Shannon before flying on to Great Britain. So I was very pleased this time to be able to explore the island a little, beginning with a quick trip up the M18 from Shannon to Galway and the little bayside suburb known as Salthill.

"The M18 motorway (Irish: Mótarbhealach M18) is an inter-urban motorway in Ireland, forming part of the Limerick, Ennis to Galway national primary road, which, in turn, forms part of the Atlantic Corridor called for as part of the Transport 21 project" (Wikipedia).

BTW, yesterday was a great day for Democrats in Virginia. Northam won the primary, but pledged to work with his rival, Perriello, to unite the party for next year's election.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Back Again

Travel is always an adventure. That's my mantra. So long as you're expecting an adventure, you know that you'll never be disappointed. This trip was no exception. But as a friend of mine said recently, "All's well that ends well." And I suppose he's right. Looking forward to sharing some images from my travels.

BTW, the steady stream of people in and out of my local polling place this morning certainly was suggestive. Today is the Virginia gubernatorial primary.