30 days around Ireland week 2
In the 2nd week, the weather gods were less favorable to us. Not all day, but every once in a while there was a big rain shower again. Raincoat on, raincoat off, hood on, hood off, rain pants on, rain pants off, sunglasses on, sunglasses off. We could laugh about it. It must have looked like a dress up party. Every time we put on our rain gear again, the shower often stopped at the same time.
Cycling uphill was heavy, so heavy Linda had to push her bicycle a few times. In Raphoe we asked someone passing by if he knew where we could spend the night in the neighborhood. He told us about a castle where many people pitch their tent for the night. However, the route description did not take us to a castle. At a daycare we again asked for directions. Ephraim was working there. When he heard our story, he said we could follow him. He had an idea. So we followed him in his car. At his house he unexpectedly offered us one of his bedrooms with a double bed and bathroom. After a day with a lot of rain such a welcome surprise. Ephraim introduced us to his wife Jean and their children Clara, Mia, Elisha and Zoe. After we had done some shopping together, we soon sat at their table with good food and a bottle of wine and beer. The hospitality in this house was unprecedented. When we set off again the next day, we left with an invitation to come back to Ireland again.
Our 1st introduction to a full Irish breakfast was in Huckleberry. Linda suddenly likes white beans in tomato sauce, sausages, black and white pudding. When you burn so many calories in one day, your body is screaming for food. You can eat anything and it all tastes so good.
The route was beautiful with several lakes and high mountains in the background. Every time we arrived at the coast, the scene of low and high tide was a pleasure to watch.
The route would go over a stretch of the beach. We hadn't seen that coming. It was fortunately low tide and gave us some nice pictures.
Halfway between Sligo and Ballysadare we asked an elderly lady who was walking her dog if she might know a place where we could spend the night. After consulting with her son we were allowed to sleep in the hay barn of the farmer family Hunter. The lady in question was Mrs. Hunter. What are the odds? When we finished making our place in the hay to sleep for the night, we were invited to share their diner (freshly caught fish), we also tasted a glass of self-fired spirits and were allowed to use their shower. After another day in the rain we were very lucky to meet Mrs. Hunter on the road. The children of the farmer's daughter were very curious about the people who were sleeping in the hay barn. They had immediately asked their mother if they could sleep in the hay once as well.
In Ballina we could sleep one night with Malcolm and Martina of Warmshowers. Because we often had no service we could not look up their address. So we were looking for a red house on the left side of the river. After a long search, we had found their home. A nice couple (she Polish and he from Australia) who had just settled in Ireland, surprised us with nice a diner and lovely stories.
The route along the coast with many high rocks was beautiful. A perfect place for a photo shoot.
At Max, Tony and Leisha’s we could sleep in their garage. We were happy we didn't have to set up the tent in the rain. They offered us tea with cookies. We started talking about Tony's backpacking experience and Leisha's travel plans. The next day we left very early. The family was still sleeping on their lazy Sunday morning. Here you can read about our 3rd week in Ireland.