One of my passions as a kid was tracing the map of Ireland. My attention was always on the edge where sea and land met and I would have wild imaginings about all the inlets ~ caves, coves, sand, shingle, rocks, waves, isolation, population, horizon …..
I couldn’t but think of all those tracings, using greaseproof paper, smooth dark lead and every ounce of my concentration, as I spent a glorious while at Portally Cove this afternoon.
Portally is just south of Dunmore East here in Co. Waterford in the South-East and can be reached either by road or along the stunning Cliff Walk from Dunmore East village.
It was quite late in the afternoon and the only other person there was a man in a red jumper which blended beautifully with blackberries yet to ripen on the winding path down to the cove. We said our hellos but it was obvious to me that he wanted solitude so we didn’t get into chat.
Here’s the the beauty that was ours. I wonder now if he, too, spent hours tracing maps of Ireland or maybe maps of other spaces, places, people, dreams …..
20 thoughts on “Inlets ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 245”
Beautiful Jean! So inviting! As a kid I ‘read’ my mum’s atlas of the world to pieces; she still has it… pages worn by me dragging it everywhere with me and finding places I never heard of.
Thanks Billie. It is a beautiful spot and I can just imagine the atlas that you dragged everywhere. I still have the one from which I did all my tracings!
Beautiful contemplative scenery that demands the silence of passing strangers to enjoy to the full! Love all things coastal so huge thanks for this post!
Hi SV, delighted to hear from you. Yes, I agree about the need for silence of passing strangers in these sorts of situations. It was balm to the soul to be there.
I am jealous. I did nothing exciting this afternoon. I would love to go for a coastal walk there is nothing like it. My very favourite walk is in Allihies along the coast from the beach to the village. It is very wild and rugged.
Ah well maybe next week!
Hi Tric, thanks for writing and I hope you get to go on your lovely walk very soon. I spent a holiday in Allihies way back but still remember it vividly and would love to go back.
Lovely! I imagine looking into the face of one who traced the map in great detail with his feet instead of a pencil. I remember holding a pencil and trying to trace maps as a child. But I was not all that skilled with it then. Yet only moments ago, and with little effort that would seem all that extraordinary, I was able to retrace my steps to the refrigerator, and grab another bottle of ale.
Hi Van, I certainly wasn’t ‘skilled’ at the tracing either but I loved it all the same. Yes, retracing steps is an interesting aspect of all this!
You mean ‘Slainte!’ (= ‘good health’ in Irish as a toast)!
One of the images reminded me strongly of Robert’s Cove here in Cork. Love maps, still avoid the Sat Nav! MM 🍀
Hi MM, I suppose the similarity isn’t too surprising as Co. Cork is just around the corner. As for Sat Nav, that’s for the next generation so far as I’m concerned. I couldn’t leave big papery maps in the past!
Keep meaning to walk to Portally. and I use to love colouring in the space between the land and the sea for my geography homework!
Oh Anne, it’s a walk you just have to take! Interesting that you mention the space between the the land and sea. I always seemed to be focussed on the very lines ~ I think I could hear the waves crashing as I did it!
I had a similar fascination with Britain – looking at large-scale maps and finding intriguing villages and isolated communities. Dunmore East is (I think) the only Waterford beach I’ve stepped on.
Hi Roy, thanks for writing and I can’t recommend the Co. Waterford beaches highly enough. Hopefully you’ll get to ‘step out’ on them before you’re much older!
I love maps! I love the look of them, the feel of them and the thrill of finding my way with them. Portally looks beautiful – will have to map my way there !
Yes, Portally is beautiful as is the whole cliff walk from Dunmore East, Hope you get to walk it soon.
I love thinking of all the possibilities while looking at maps too – especially for places I’ve never been. It must be great when the real place matches those expectations. I love that last photo because it looks like there must be a hidden cave in there. 🙂
Sheila, I agree that the issue of the match between expectations about unknown plaves on maps and the reality is always exciting, even to think about! I’m planning on finding out more about caves in the Portally area. I half expected to see a character from Treasure Island clambering up the cliff!