Photo by Jason DeVarennes

Friday, September 22, 2017

To Skibbereen

This trip to Ireland began in mid September 2017 - I'm slowly getting around to posting 

Why, you may ask, do I go to the trouble of documenting our trips, including photos, maps and links.  Maybe one of my seven loyal readers will be inspired to follow our tracks or check out a few of the places we have visited. But to be honest,  it's really for my own use, when years later, I return to a place and want to see what we did before! My first trip to Ireland was in 1993 and I wrote an article that later got published in a now defunct Tandem Magazine. I subsequently put it up on our original website. Since we were planning to revisit some places from that trip, I pulled up the article to  see where we stayed and what we did.

While reading through it, I was actually surprised to discover that we had stayed in Skibbereen on that trip in 1993. I didn't have any distinct memories of the town from that visit. However, I had much fresher memories from last year, when we passed through at lunch time and had a fabulous meal at the Church Restaurant. I made note last year to come back for dinner, so I mapped out a route to Skibbereen.

Fortunately my stomach was feeling much better after a day off and some pills from the pharmacist. For Americans, who are used to going into a CVS or Walgreens, and perusing shelves upon shelves  of OTC drugs, going into a European pharmacy can be a little intimidating. Although, in fairness, a visit to a US pharmacy might be intimidating to Europeans. In most of Europe,  pharmacies are quite small, and they don't carry vacuum cleaners and holiday decorations! And the drugs aren't sitting out on a shelf. Even for non-prescription drugs, you tell the pharmacist what's wrong and they suggest one or two drugs that may help. "I think I have food poisoning and I need something to settle my stomach." "Ok, take 1 of these every 12 hours until the symptoms go away." Whatever it was, it did the trick.

Now I've talked before about how I, or rather SadiB, does the mapping for our tours in Ireland. Using RideWithGPS, I, uh I mean she will set a couple of towns as waypoints and then connect them with white roads. Using the OSMCycle maps, the roads are all color coded, with the white ones being the tiny lanes that are best for cycling. It is impossible to go wrong doing this. Ireland has such a labyrinth of tiny little roads. You don't need to go to some well known busy tourist area. Just map out a route on white roads and you'll pass old castle ruins and wind turbines and have an amazing ride.

This is literally what we did. We picked our endpoints and a village in the middle and then dragged a few via points around to stay on the smallest roads.

When we arrived in town, the Bridge House B&B caught our attention, and I'm so glad it did. The signs out front called it Ireland's most unusual B&B, and indeed it is. Our hostess Mona, has decorated every corner of the place in what can only be called an eclectic flair. She was incredibly gracious and friendly and the bed and shower were top notch. And our meal at the Church Restaurant did not disappoint. We will definitely be back.

I also blog because John loves to take photos, and it gives me a way to show something for all that time spent modelling!


  1. Pamela, I don't think I ever saw the older article you wrote for Tandem Magazine. Can you provide a link? Love reading about your journeys.

    1. Hi Paul, The link is http://www.blayleys.com/trips/1993/ireland/index.htm

    2. Thank you, I enjoy reading about people's travels.