Carriage take me with you...
It's official. Summer here in Ireland de Norte is over. Before it started. Today being the first of Autumn (and of a months torture...as we have decided to spend September alcohol and red meat free. Seemed like such a good idea before those final Cuba Libres...)
Thank (God/Allah/Tom Cruise etc.) we decided to extend our RTW shizzle when we did. Has royally f**ked us in the Gary Glitter financially, but worth it to:
1/ Dodge apparently the wettest summer in Ireland de Norte's recorded history, and:
2/ Loaf on RIo's beaches, reflecting upon the previous 11 months 40,000km journey (Almost a third of which was by rail. No idea why. Train fetishists wet-dream.)
So have we learnt anything then? Definitely:
1/ Don't sit beside any S.E.Asians on a boat. For a region where water is vital in terms of transport & fishing, they aint' too good at holding breakfast down when she starts rockin'.
2/ Underwear can last a whole lot longer than you ever thought possible.
3/ Don't buy the Lonely Planet. Take your digital camera into a high street bookstore of choice, and snap the important bits (Macro mode hombre!). Saving you from: A/ Parting with at least 15.00 quid, and B/ Unfunny, self-righteous travel writers. China Williams, you are gonna get your coupon slapped. Deal with that douche-bag!
Oh yeah, and when you're sinking into the depths of chronic depression, don't read Paddy Doyle's 'The God Squad'. As I just did. Where's that rope...
It's been over four weeks back on home turf now for us, and though we scoffed at the concept initially, we have noticed a (mental) struggle to readjust. Seriously. Maybe it's the glaring lack of racial/cultural diversity here? More importantly even practical things, like trying to not sound retarded when speaking English, have been hard. And we're really missing the small things (though huge in meaning to us) such as the gregariousness of Buenos Aires (thank you Manu for the 'Man-Hug' tuition, & Francine for teaching us how to kiss 'properly'*), and the vibrant street life of S.E.Asia and S.America (Tescos, why the resistance to negotiating prices at the check-out?). Maybe it's because we've actually been living in locations more agreeable to our temperament? For example, of the three, maybe four people we met from Belfast during the whole trip, two of them asked what part of the city we were from, you know, to ascertain our religion. We mean, just what the f**k?! F**k off! And we just despair at sh1t like this:
£120,000 for a logo that's been blatantly ripped off. And an inability to admit the magnitude of it's awfulness. Speaks volumes about this place...
Had to bail out and hit Donegal for a week to get over it all:
Eh? A typical Kilclooney welcome...
Nancy's pub, Ardara. (L-R) Rick, Ash, Kong-a-tron, Steve, Isabel and Greg. A place we had been dreaming of on 'the road'. For a fundamental athiest such as myself, the seafood and Guinness in here is the closest I'm going to get to Nirvana. And that's just fine. So it is.
Sh1t! We're Buddhists now. The wedding...
One of the Dolmen around Kilclooney. Getting up close and personal with a 5,000 year old monument good for a little life perspective. (Desperately trying not to sound Sheryl Crow'esque...) Sarah-Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick were there too. Honestly.
Isabel. Maghera beach, Ardara. Water chock full of trout, beach heaving with oysters and mussels. Paradise. And the first horse riding since Mongolia. (Thank you Ash for your expert guidance. A little strict mind you...but I bet the Kong is loving that ha ha!)
Carriage take me with you.
Ship, steal me away from here!
Take me far, far away.
Here the mud is made of our tears.
A little bit of Baudelaire to wrap up...
Angkor Wat, Forbidden City, Inca Trail, Iguazu, Lake Baikal, Machu Picchu, Nazca Lines, Rapa Nui Maoi, Wall of China...seem so long ago already. Reminiscing may be a luxury afforded the old, but by God us pups are needing an Eamon Holmes sized portion of it right now!
So, time for us to go deep cover, and generate some necessary greenbacks. (Obviously whilst trying every possible method at our disposal of sticking it to the Man...). This month going to be insane, what with us returning to our previous careers and learning Spanish, plus me commencing my degree (yes, finally). Never mind no fakking alcohol...aaaarrrgghhhh!!!
One year on, and the game's up son!
So it's Sayonara from us Amigos. Maybe the next time you catch us around here it will be with a new map...he he!
All our love,
Steve & Sarah Rea-Neill.
The pic of the trip!
- 3 kisses. Left cheek first. 1 for 'you', 1 for 'me' and 1 for 'us'.
PS: JP thanks for the transport from Donegal. Muchos Gracias Hombre!
PPS: ATTENTION ALL TRAVEL COMRADES, WE ARE HAVING OUR WEDDING RECEPTION IN BELFAST ON SATURDAY 10TH JANUARY 2009. ALL WELCOME. EMAIL US AT THE USUAL IF YOU THINK YOU CAN MAKE IT OVER TO IRELAND. WOULD BE AMAZING TO SEE Y'ALL. STEVE & SARAH XOX.