Today was different: for the first time on this ride, I had nobody to meet.
Like cycle touring normally is (for me, at least) I was on my own. I could stop whenever I wanted, and go as fast (or slow) as I wanted. That’s liberating.
Having said that, meeting John Devoy and his wife, Sarah, improved my life. They’re both extremely nice people and I consider myself lucky for having had the opportunity to spend time with them.
Speaking of John, if you’re going to buy his remarkably good book, Quondam (and you would love it if you did) then do yourself the favour of buying it directly from his website. That way, you’ll get a better quality book, and you can even get it signed by the author!
Today the weather was gorgeous! I set off from Clonakilty, heading to Baltimore – the original, not the New York namesake.
I think I fell even more in love with Ireland today. I consider myself a reasonably skilled writer, but I simply lack the words to do the scenery justice.
However, it’s not just the scenery – stunning as it is. It’s also the people. Today, I was walking my bike up a bastardly steep hill (the front wheel kept lifting when I tried to cycle up it) when I encountered an old(ish) man walking down the hill.
We said hello, and he wanted to know everything about my trip, then sent me off with well wishes
Some time later, I was cycling along a very narrow lane, when I saw a car coming towards me. There wasn’t space for us both, but there was a gap for me to pull over, so I did.
When the driver came alongside, he stopped to have a chat. He asked about my route, and offered advice.
These incidents aren’t unusual in Ireland. Instead, they’re the norm!
Today, I finished my ride in Ballydehob, a gorgeous village on the Mizen peninsula. As I cycled uphill along the main road, all the shops and pubs seemed closed. I turned around as I was about to leave the village, and let go of the brakes to breeze downhill again.
At this point I noticed 3 young people (well, considerably younger than me) outside a pub, and pulled my bike up. After getting a cider, while sitting in the sun, I started chatting with them.
They are very interesting and genuinely nice people. Isabel and Tom is a couple who live in their van, and travel around, creating videos for their YouTube channel. They just signed off on renting some land near the village.
Philly and his wife (who I didn’t meet at the time, as she was working, delivering online maths lessons) also live in their van, and also have a YouTube channel.
If you’re into VanLife YouTube channels, I suggest you give them all a follow! They’re a genuinely nice bunch!
To be in with a chance of winning John Devoy’s fantastic book, Quondam, you need to answer all the questions that I post on a daily basis.
Today’s question is: Twice the height of the Eiffel Tower, three times the height of the famous Cliffs of Moher, can you name the highest sea-cliffs in Europe?