Monday, August 29, 2011

Hanging in An Daingean

The next leg of our journey was our favorite - we spent two nights slowing down, staying in the town of Dingle and exploring the Dingle Peninsula. The region is a Gaeltacht area, a place with heavy emphasis on the Gaelic language and traditions with government subsidies to help with the preservation. As such, road signs are in Gaelic, shop signs as well, and the Gaelic language is alive and well. This area was a favorite of ours, and our two night stay was all too brief. Dingle town has a lovely bay, several streets filled with colorful shops and restaurants, a number of artisans plying their trade, and the Dingle Peninsula, which is crowded with historical ruins. We spent half a day driving around looking like bobble heads as we came upon one spectacular view after another.

View from our Guesthouse's front yard
The rest of the day we spent enjoying the town, shopping for presents, having afternoon tea, strolling along the harbor, and in general, just enjoying being on vacation. Spending one day driving the Ring of Kerry and the next driving the Dingle Peninsula gave me such an appreciate of how the environment shapes my moods. I don't know that I've ever been so aware of this concept as I was in this region. The Ring of Kerry was full of steep hills, turbulent waters, and sharp curves around the cliffs, and I found my mood reflecting all that, full of tension and up and down emotions, a general sense of feeling unsettled. In contrast, the Dingle Peninsula is one of gentle, rounded hills, rolling green to the calm blue waters, the road curves softly through the hills, and my mood mirrored this landscape with tranquility and calmness. What a lovely chance to unwind and relax.
In the pub; we particularly liked the guy sleeping in the corner.
Just one of many interesting shopfront decorations
View of Dingle town from the marina

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