While Ann set off for a weekend of music, Cait and I met up with Tomas and the others to begin the long, winding ride up to Galway. As previously noted, I’m not much of a fan of buses, and I am definitely not a fan of the Back Bus People (guess who’s back?). However, not only would Cait be there, but Leili would be, too, and beside our little jaunt down to the Lough to go dancing, we hadn’t really spent much time together. Thus we settled in to our bus rows and, after watching some beautiful scenery turn monotonous, we fell asleep.
The Cliffs themselves were breathtakingly amazing, but, as usual, Tomas warned us that we only had a limited amount of time, a little more than thirty minutes. The cliffs not only a pretty view (the sides are almost sheer and about 700 feet high), but they also have an exhibition center and a viewing tower, which was built in the 1800s. Tomas told us he would purchase tickets for the exhibit, if we wished, but that those who went through the exhibit would probably not have time to walk along the cliffs. Leili and I decided to walk the Cliffs, but first–coffee.
It was at the little coffee shop where we realized that Leili had left her bank card at home, and I had no cash. Thus, we decided to solve our problem very simply: we would use Leili’s cash when there was no opportunity to use a card, and we would use my card otherwise, and keep track of our expenses. If there was a difference, we would make it up when we finally returned home. As we went along, we discovered this was a good decision as quite literally no one had an ATM machine. Despite this, we grabbed our coffees and began walking along the cliffs. As we walked, we both promised ourselves that we would come back and spend a day here, packing a lunch. That way, we could experience the exhibit and spend the entire day hiking and exploring and watching the beautiful coastline.
Only too soon we had to move along. We stopped at a 16th century house which had fallen to ruin status, and had a rumor that the last mistress of the house might have been a Constance Hathaway character (a la Disney’s Haunted House), but most historians believe that she just had extraordinary bad luck in husbands, and was not in any way malevolent.
We finally arrived in Galway as the sun was beginning to set, but not so late that I failed to spot a nearby coffee shop (which, knowing myself, would come in very handy the next morning). We ate a decent dinner together, then went back to the hostel to enjoy some music, as a few people had brought musical instruments with them (not from our group). Ben, of course, pulled out his violin and began playing.
If the evening had ended there, it would have been a wonderful trip, but a bottle of vodka (belonging to others staying at the hostel, not ourselves) and some belligerent individuals turned the experience sour, so despite the wonderful coffee and pastries we picked up the next morning, it was with no regrets that we moved on the to the Aran Islands.