Friday, August 10, 2018

Ireland is...

City, town, castle, country, cliffs...and we have only been here for two days. Day one; next post, was spent exploring New Grange, a monument that earned the name honestly. It is a passage tomb over 5000 years old...more on that tomorrow. We also spent an afternoon in Dublin, below, and today we had a day of sight-seeing along the coast and inland in Clare County, Ireland. I may have a new favorite country.

Christ Church Cathedral: (for better photos):

 This was Lahinch, where we picnicked with a view of the cliffs:

Thursday, August 9, 2018

The "dirty sock" period of having houseguests

Papy had just disappeared through the hedge. I had never seen him do this. He waited, impatiently, for the man mowing the neighbor's lawn to look up from his work. The unsuspecting fellow, head-set on and focused on what he was doing, apparently finally glanced up and yelled out a loud cry of near apoplectic surprise. We saw none of this from our side of the hedge, we only heard the shout and got the story when he returned. Everything was a source of irritation for him, and this guy, this guy DARED to mow his lawn at 12:35pm, something the law clearly prohibited, as my mother-in-law explained to me, as she waited anxiously on the other side with me. It was meant to allow people to eat in peace, but as far as I could see, we were not about to eat any time soon, not before 1 or 1:15 per our usual lunch time. It was, they explained, the principle. They had the right to call the cops to report him. And the police would have had to come...ha ha ha. 

Once you hit the two week mark, staying with family seems to be more complicated. What was one's best behavior can become less...natural, if you will. This may result in increased grumpiness, a little less restraint and a little more tension. We stayed for four weeks this time.

Back to the police and the utility of calling the constable.

Have I told you about the time I called the police in my village in the south of France because there was a cow on the road at 4am? I only knew there was a cow on the road because I lived up on top of the ancient ramparts of the village and I had a view of everything below. There was a dog barking that did not usually bark and I walked over to the window to check  out why, since I was not sleeping. 

I saw a form that might have been a large wolf (it was still sort of dark, right?), so I called my husband over to the window too. Together we determined that it was not a wolf, it was a...? Oh, there, it meandered under a street light; it was a cow. The police were notified; someone might run into that cow, dang it.They seemed to duly note the event and the location and we hung up. An hour later, this is 5am and I have fallen back asleep, right? the phone was the police, asking me, me with the American accent, so, clearly not a local, if I knew who owned the cow. And would I mind looking out to see if the cow was still visible in the road?

Ach! Here are some photos of daily life when everyone comes to every poor mother-in-law! Papy, very precisely cutting the birthday cake:

Cousins; Remy, Thomas and Gael:
Mamie, Thierry and Remy:

  And...the Tour de France, zooming past, after a 3-hour wait to see it: