This summer, for our weeks’ escape from The City, we chose family. We decided against the sunny shores of the Corinthian gulf in Greece – our default – and stayed instead with the ‘Out Laws’ in County Tipperary, Ireland. When we’d booked it, I almost felt nervous at the prospect. The weather could be terrible, the kind that no matter how well you prepare saps the life out of anything you do, so there was a lot of pressure riding on our one week of freedom.
What we got was a delicious surprise, we ended up leaving with our hand luggage and hearts full. We walked along a bare-sand beach, ate fresh hot chips on the seafront, hiked up cliffs to the howling sound of the sea birds mingling with the wash, and blared music in our tiny tin can car. We ate barbecued food outside in the garden with a granny, ate fresh-baked scones the size of my head with another; walked through wildflowers, cooked and ate with Atlantic seaweed, drank coffees, strolled around historical houses with family. We were shown apple trees heavy with ripening fruit, not ready yet to be tasted.
Each moment was so rich, and I greedily squeezed every ounce from every second. I felt like this was an important time – normal life with family – joking and chatting about nothing in particular. I will never forget the sun on my face hiking those cliffs, the dog jumping to lick me when lying on the grass in the garden. The sound of the clothes line squeaking lonely in the breeze keeping the apple trees company.
Lahinch beach, Co.Clare: River Suir towards Cahir Castle, Co. Tipperary:
Swiss Cottage, Cahir, Co. Tipperary:
A man and his dog:
A Yew tree in Co. Tipperary:
Cliffs of Moher, Co. Clare:
A namesake pub (Daly’s) in Ennistymon, Co. Clare:
Learning how to use foraged foods (including wild Atlantic seaweed and wildflowers):
Lahinch beach, Co. Clare:
Looks like Provence, is actually the Tipperary back garden: