We had a wonderful Christmas in Kilcrohane on the Sheepshead Peninsula in West Cork. We went with Stephen, over from St. Petersburg, Russia; Emily, from Minneapolis; and Matt, one of their friends, from Saint-Raphael, France. Our week included a visit to Fitzpatrick’s one evening, several to the O’Mahony store, and stops in Durrus, Bantry, Ahakista, and other charming towns.
We also had winds, fog, sleet, and torrential rain. Locals call it “rain,” even though it blows horizontally, rather than falling sensibly from the top down. There were several terrific gales (or was it one long one?), which made us thankful for the stone walls of Betsy and Michael’s cottage. Sitting by a warm fire, we could look out on gorgeous Dunmanus Bay with sunny skies one time and am awesome storm the next.
Despite the general theme of winter storm, we had frequent sun and glorious skies. That allowed us to manage several good walks. One was in the ancient forest above Glengariff; another around Lough Hyne south of Skibbereen; and others on the Sheepshead Way. We made good use of Kevin Corcoran’s West Cork Walks.
Emily was a writing dervish, thus missing some of the walks. Her friend Matt played his guitar, while posed on the large window seat. Stephen had a swim down at the end of the road. He was inspired in part by Frank O’Mahony, who had done the St Stephen’s Day charity swim at the pier. Perhaps it was warmer for the swimmers to be in the water than in the air, given the sleet and winds. And we played a fair bit of bridge.
Photos by Susan Porter Bruce.