A little town called Doolin

I have so much I want to write about this little Irish town on the west coast.

To start, this is by far the most beautiful of the towns I’ve visited in this trip. Hills, ocean, brooks, and lots of green. I must’ve walked through the town a dozen times just taking in the scenery:

And then the quaint little buildings, including a few pubs and boutique shops. If it weren’t for the tourists I doubt many of these stores would stay in business.

On my first night I had a few (ie. many) drinks at O’Connor’s pub and listened to some great trad music. A fantastic atmosphere, albeit with the presence of many Americans out and loud¬† celebrating their Independence Day.

At about 11:30pm I felt like taking a walk down to the shoreline and so, in darkness, I drunkenly walked the 2km or so till I could hear the ocean.

Because it was so dark I wasn’t able to get to the water – I discovered the next day that I had to take a right so as to avoid the camping grounds and get to the pebble beach. But the walk itself was great.

I slept in the next day and had a full Irish breakfast:


This Day, Friday 5 July, was to be the day I farewell my oldest and favourite item of clothing, Peter Parka. I was nervous the whole walk over which took about 25 min from my hotel.

Listening to Loreena McKennitt along the way I finally found myself facing the ocean. I wanted some privacy so I went searching along the rocks for a more secluded place and, about another half an hour later, I found it.

It was a somewhat hidden area with the camping site and tourists hidden behind a big rock formation, while I looked directly out at the Atlantic Ocean.

And there I found the perfect Cliff. I took old Peter Parka from my backpack and sat there for a very long while just thinking about everything that jacket represented in my life, and how this act of letting it go was far, far more than just getting rid of an old and used jacket.

For the last fifteen years and more that jacket has kept me warm and safe, cloaking me and giving me comfort. So, despite it being just a jacket, I felt like I was saying goodbye to one of me closest friends. It was (and still is) a very emotional thing for me and something I know nobody understands.

So I prepared myself; I considered wrapping the jacket up in a bundle but then decided to just let it go as I’d been wearing it all these years, as that was far more fitting.

I zipped and buttoned it up and stood on the cliffside. I put on The Old Ways by Loreena McKennitt and, at the right moment, I threw the jacket over the Cliff.

The jacket unfurled and seemed to float down to the water, landing spread eagle add the waves crashed against the cliff.

Moments later it was gone.

I stayed for a short while afterwards and then slowly made my way back over the rocks to the beach and then to town.

I was really sad but also glad I made the decision. Coming to Doolin was very much about this act and I feel like I did what I was supposed to.

When I got back to town I saw the young guy (Liam) at the tourist and boat tour office. He recognised me and we started a talk that lasted over an hour.

He invited me to go watch his Hurling game at 7:30, writing down the location on a piece of paper. It took all my strength and will power not to correct the several mistakes… including even the name of the town:

I didn’t end up going to watch the local game, instead I grabbed sine dinner and a drink at McGinn’s pub, listened to a few songs from the trad pergormers, and then went back to my hotel pretty early to pack and organise accommodation for my stay in London tonight.

My originally booked hotel feel through because I apparently have the wrong credit card details. Very annoyjng and expensive mistake! But it’s all good. Tonight I’ll catch up with Katherine.

I’m just at the airport now waiting to board my flight, and I think I’ll leave this blog entry here…

Doolin is my favourite place in Ireland and I’ll definitely be back.

Saturday 6 July.  12:16pm.

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