August Theme: Eye on Ireland
As I was growing up, I remember my father had this nice collection of National Geographic magazines, all neatly arranged on the shelves of his office. We had restricted access to them. Browsing was fine, reading was encouraged, but under no circumstance were we allowed to ever cut or rip any of the alluring pictures from these beautiful, yellow coloured books.
So, we browsed, we read what we understood & tried never to be tempted by the amazing photos, staring back us from every single page. And we succeeded. At least, most of the time, we did.
But every now and then a magazine would end up in our hands with an issue about Ireland in it. Pages filled with pictures of wild, rugged coastlines, deserted fields full of wildflowers, limestone houses & rolling green hills stretching far and wide. Pictures so grand, so inspiring, so very very tempting…..
I don’t know why my sisters & I were obsessed with Ireland the way we were as kids. I don’t know why we pretended to have curly, red hair or why we ran through the garden with ceiling mob-horses between our childlike legs, pretending to gallop over those grassy hills & mountains. I don’t know why we insisted on listening to dreamy, Irish ballads before bedtime or why our imagination ran wild every time we saw pictures of that faraway country. Maybe it were the stories; those famous, ancient myths which somehow found their way across many miles of land to reach our ears & crawl into our receptive minds. Or maybe it was the obvious contrast between the dusty, dry land outside of our window that made us take notice of that green country so far from where we lived. Whatever it was & whatever the reason; we were in love with a country we had never been to & where we, in all likelihood, wouldn’t go to anytime soon. And so our dream was born…..
Just this week, I apologized to my father for ruining his magazines, for ripping photos from the articles he might have wanted to read. In retrospect, I can see how all these half-finished stories about that green Island must have been a little frustrating for him.
So, to avoid any further annoyance, my sister & I decided that it was about time we would leave National Geographic magazine alone & start making some pictures of our own. Time to see it all with our own two eyes. Time to make a dream come true
And so, we booked a ticket to Cork, got onto the bus to a little coastal village called Glengarriff & set out into the vast, green world that is Ireland.
In the coming few photo- updates, I will share some of my Irish holiday stories & pictures with you. The pictures are, by no means, like those in National Geographic magazine that made us fall in love with this country in the first place. But they are my own pictures, taken while finally exploring the one place I have wanted to explore as long as I can remember. It’s a collection of images I took while climbing steep hills, dodging startled sheep & finding my way down slippery rocks. It’s Ireland through my eyes, captured while my sister & I were having the time of our lives, living the dream that started when that very first National Geographic ended up in our hands.
All pictures are shown at random & they were all taken on the Beara Peninsula, a beautiful, almost unexplored peninsula on the south-west coast of Ireland. Here we hiked a long distance walk, the Beara Way; an unforgettable experience, about which I will tell you more real soon…..