Saturday, July 21
Mr. Waffle was restored to us. We went out for lunch to celebrate. The sun shone with some determination and when herself and myself went for a swim in the late afternoon, it was warm. Unprecedented in these waters in my experience.
Then my sister came and collected me. While my noble husband minded the children, I went up to Cork for dinner and then the cinema.
Sunday, July 22
And best of all, I slept in my parents’ house and didn’t get up until 11 on Sunday morning. I genuinely cannot remember the last time I slept so late in the morning. It was fantastic. Oh happiness. I am a champion sleeper, if only given a chance. Sigh.
In the afternoon, reunited with my family, we went to “The Queenstown Experience.” We had been before when the children were smaller and they hadn’t liked it much but it was pouring rain, they were older and they had spent the year learning about the Titanic in school. Unfortunately, this made no difference and the boys, in particular, remained resolutely underwhelmed. Alas.
Monday, July 23
This was our last full day in Garryvoe and was to bring two important sets of visitors, our friends who live in the Netherlands and their four children and childminder and the washing machine repair man. Inevitably, they all arrived simultaneously.
The washing machine man said that there was nothing wrong with the washing machine other than that the water pressure was low (confirmed with neighbour that pressure always low in summer). All that was required was to plug it out and it would reset itself which it duly did. Oh bitterness, thy name is hotpoint.
It was lovely to see our friends though. The children all got on being of similar ages. Despite dreadful weather we all quite enjoyed a trip to the beach except for the Hiberno-Dutch children’s Colombian au pair. She sat glumly on a rock wrapped in her coat and looking in horror at the children in their togs. Under the direction of the Dutch part of the Hiberno-Dutch group they were building a canal at the edge of the water while digging for clay an activity which made them all satisfyingly wet and dirty. I asked the Hiberno part of the Hiberno-Dutch couple what she thought of the changes in Ireland since the economy collapsed and she commented: “We’re much nicer when we’re poor, aren’t we?”
Tuesday, July 24
We set off for Dublin stopping in Cork for lunch but, at least no washing, so it wasn’t all bad. We beguiled the three hour journey in a variety of ways. “Guess the character” where one person thinks of a character and the others have to guess who it is. Daniel kept us guessing for a long time. He had “road-runner”, it’s not that we didn’t guess that, it’s just that he wanted us to guess which episode and nobody managed that, as he pointed out.
Michael resorted to the DS. “Why isn’t it in English?” he wailed. “I changed it to Dutch, after yesterday,” said Daniel, “you know, I speak Dutch now.”
It was a long drive.
And next I’ll do France but not until the middle of the month. Yeah, I know, you’re on the edge of your seat out there.