I spent two evenings in Waterford city at a bed and breakfast just across the river Suir and a 3 block stroll from the Plunkett train station. The place was called The Anchorage– and all in all it wasn’t bad considering the price; 25 euro a night. The walls were as thin as playing cards so I could hear all manner of ruckus but! A bed and a shower is a welcome relief from trekking.
As I left the city on the 14th, I walked…
I walked… and damn did I walk. From Waterford, I walked to a coastal town called Tramore.
Tramore is an interesting place in itself; there in the cove the tragic wreck of the Sea Horse took place during the era of the Napoleonic Wars in the mid 1800’s…
and subsequently a giant metal man, Admiral Wolseley, was constructed atop a cluster of 3 towers on the southern point of the cove. He points to the harbor and out to the sea, warning all sailors of the danger- no safe harbor here! (I find him to have a striking similarity to Elvis)
As I was walking down the dusty road with my rucksack in search of this pointing, swaggering, admiral elvis, I came to a point where I figured the towers would be. they were located on the edge of the cliffs and on private property. A man who appeared from his shed with a length of fishing net he was mending looked at me as I was passing and I took the opportunity to ask him how I could gain access to the towers. It was his property, and when I asked he responded, “Off you go then, boy.” With not much more than that he told me to hop over the fences, get into the pasture, hang a right and there it’ll be.
Legend and folklore say that on stormy nights the metal man can be heard chanting, “Keep out good ship, keep out from me, For I am the rock of misery”. Another interesting legend states that if a women is to skip around the tower 3 times on one leg she will be married that year. I was charmed and though lady I am not, skip and hop around it I did!
Well more walking was in store for me and I trekked 3 miles to the main road and put a thumb out in the direction of Dungarvan. A nice man picked me up in his caravan. He had a beautiful and large family of two girls and baby son named Killian- he was good enough to bring me to the township of Bunmahon where we talked on the beach and enjoyed the salty breeze; the children were digging in the sand with shovels and their pales.
I dashed off to the other side of the parking lot as I saw a camper and bid adieu to a new friend. I inquired if, she, the driver was heading towards Dungarvan; she was heading towards Ballystrand instead. I went along with her and she decided to take me past Ballystrand and 30km down to Dungarvan and to my ultimate destination of Ring. I had it in my head to visit the grave of another hero, Liam Clancy of the Clancy Brothers.
She and I were kindred spirits and huge fans of Celtic folk, reels and jigs-after the end of the trip she asked if i’d like to spend the evening with her and her boyfriend at their house and I readily accepted the invitation. We had a legend of a night with Guinness an authentic Turf fire (peat) and live music.
Next stop Cork- see you soon, folks!