Archive for July, 2005
…or at least the moon. It’s looking rather like something out of a horror movie lately and given tonights full moon I took the opportunity to setup the tripod and telephoto lens next to my window and fire off a few shots. Oh for the want of an even longer lens!
Just outside Sligo on the N16 heading north is Glencar Lake & Waterfall. You’ll know if you’ve passed the first entry to the scenic route; you’ll see a huge design on the mountain side. Fear not! You can simply take the next entry several hundred metres down the road.
The first time I passed this I didn’t even see the mountain. Could have been because it was about 9pm in late Autumn and I was more interested in getting to Strabane, my final destination that night. Needless to say I’m suitably impressed now that I have seen it and it was pleasing to be able to take some decent pictures of it. More on Flickr. (You may have noticed that I’ve taken the advice of someone with greater knowledge than I on the whole technorati front and as such I have created a new sub-category; irishphotos. Cheers Damien.)
Tonight’s “Last Word with Matt Cooper” on TodayFM featured the author of a book named “Born Gay“. Qazi Rahman explores the somewhat controversial idea that everyone is born gay and one does not ‘choose’ to be gay by ones life experiences or the way you are brought up. The interview raised some interesting points, I’d imagine the book would be a good read.
To keep a healthy level of insanity to evening radio, a born again Christian was invited onto the show to spout quotes from the bible in a moronic fashion. The jist of it is “Sodomites be damned!” as stated in Leviticus blah blah. I was very surprised at the attitude of the David Cahoon, the Christian in question. Being a man of both science and religion, I guess he chose which path to follow. Apparently people are born in sin, not gay. I think the argument for science weighs heavier than that of religion in this and most cases.
I have mirrored the portion of the show in question and you can listen to it here. So, born gay? Even if it’s not entirely true it’s an interesting slant on the heterosexual/homosexual divide.
In the past I have publicly complained and been quite verbal on the subject of how unrealistically expensive it is to insure anything in Ireland. Possibly none more so than motor insurance for young drivers, specifically young male drivers. Last year I guffawed in the direction of my long term broker Aon Bike Care, who after switching insurers to AXA, saw fit to raise my premium from €1275 to around €1700. No claims, accidents or any of that malarky. 5 years no claims bonus. Full license.
After cutting out the middle man and going straight to Hibernian I got the years coverage for not much more than €1300, quite a saving over the AXA option. Well that time of year has arrived once more and yet again I find myself up the creek without a paddle. Hibernian, whom I have been insured with since I began on two wheels sent me what I presumed was a renewal letter. It wasn’t. Instead they say;
Over the past few months Hibernian General Insurance Ltd. has carried out an in-depth review of it’s motorcycle insurance account. As a result of this review, a decision has been taken to withdraw from the motorcycle insurance market over a phased period commencing 1st July 2005.
Perhaps not entirely surprising given that Aon took the curious step of moving to another provider early last year. It’s more or less a given that Carole Nash will not cover me. They refused me cover last year on a 1300cc group 7 bike, given that I was below 25. It’s a foregone certainty that I won’t be going anywhere near AXA, crowd of thieves that they no doubt still are.
As was likely to happen anyway, I’ll probably be going uninsured and making use of my 4-wheeled transport instead. Maybe in the late spring I’ll take my status as a 25 year old and 6 years no claims bonus to Carole Nash and see what she thinks of it.
I feel for the bikers in their teens and early 20’s left with only AXA to fall on. As if premiums weren’t high enough already, now there’s even less competition!
I meant to write a quick note about this yesterday. Heard that a man from Waterford was given 4 years for the murder of his brother.
The men began fighting after new years celebrations under the influence of enough drink to kill a small Russian army. One of the dead man’s eyes was ‘taken out’ by his brother in a previous argument and following an offer to remove the other one, the soon to be dead man casually informed his brother that his girlfriend was sleeping around, only of course he didn’t know about it. Even more enraged (and presumably still pondering an eye popping) he went home, got a knife from the kitchen and stabbed his brother several times, including once in the (as the news put it) juggler vein. I’m quite sure they meant to pronounce it “jugular”. The judge in the case deemed the man to be a danger to society and denied his mothers plea for the sentance to be suspended.
To summarise, 4 years? Almost makes me want to go out and brutally murder someone I dont like. Hey why worry? I’ll be back on the streets in 4 years! Maybe 2 of those will even get suspended! Yes ladies and gentlemen, the term Irish justice is still an oxymoron.
Just outside Sligo town are the Carrowmore Passage Tombs. The drive up the mountain isn’t for the faint of heart or those that would consider themselves protective of whatever they drive. Incidentally I ended up leaving part of my trusty transport on the mountain when my better half convinced me that there was nothing behind me whilst reversing. Yeah, sure…
In this, the first set of my Sligo pictures, I find myself quite disappointed with the turnout. Having viewed all of the shots, nothing stands out as very worthy of mention but I thought I might as well share a few of the pictures that are someway passable. I’ll just save my deflating ego by blaming those damn overcast & wet/windy conditions. Curse you foul weather!
After reading V’s comment last night on returning from Sligo, I got to thinking that I shouldn’t give up so easily. With that in mind I hastily picked out five presentable Tall Ships pictures and burned them onto CD-ROM. I filled out the required documentation, crossed the t’s and dotted the… lower case j’s. I even went so far as to get a printed copy too! Into Flor Griffin (to be the subject of a rant at a later date) and got a 6×4 printed of each. Stuffed them all into an envelope and hit the road.
Got to Waterford around 11:30am, dropped the envelope through the postbox of the Munster Express and had a walk around. After a superbly healthy visit to Burger King, I finally got some pictures of that crane on the docks that I’d been staring at on every visit through the city.
From there I made my way to Dunmore East, a small town that seems to centre itself around fishing. I had expected alot more people to be there but nevertheless I explored somewhat.
Bigger – Full Set
From there I moved on again, taking in a very brief stop in Tramore.
The water looked inviting even to me, someone who associates getting wet with having done something majorly wrong. Everyone else on the beach seemed to be enjoying themselves anyway. No obligatory bikini shots this time around, I didn’t want to be arrested and tagged for having a camera at the beach that looks unlike all the other point & shoot’s. That’s why I didn’t break out the telephoto lens…
Back on the Cork road, I found the start of the Comeragh drive. Finally I get to do this! I can’t count how many times I’ve passed here while zooming down to Waterford to visit a client and promised myself that I’d get up there someday soon. I don’t think I could have picked a better day than today (other than maybe tomorrow or yesterday.. or the day before…)
After walking the path to the waterfall and pondering on having a heart attack from the weight on my back (camera bag) and the heat, I sat for a minute and wondered if I should climb half way up the mountain side to get a better view. It was only after I had climbed the right side of the waterfall that I saw the ease with which people were ascending on the left. At least I got a workout; and a few nice pictures!
Bigger – Full Set
After gulping a number of mouthfulls of the water that I had come to see and marvelling at it’s truly sheepshit-esque aftertaste, I bottled some of it up for the trek back to the van. This time I had some amount of sense and climbed down the easier and far less steep left side.
On the way back around the mountain, I got a few shots of this fella who almost seemed to be saying “Oi! Stop taking pictures of my waterfall!”
Bigger – Full Set
After a few more miles of narrow, winding mountain roads I was back onto the Cork road. I only went down to bloody Waterford to drop an envelope into a postbox!
I’m heading north for a few days. Sligo, Donegal, Mayo and a good deal of Northern Ireland too I hope. Just in case you’d all be wondering why my recent spurt of posting slowed to a stop until the weekend, it’s ‘cos I ain’t here. I’ll be back with more photos than you could shake a tree trunk at.