Zenfolio | Merrill Morrow | Two 'oul Boys and a Bike - Day 8 (Story)

Two 'oul Boys and a Bike - Day 8 (Story)

June 08, 2017  •  Leave a Comment


The remains of Ballybunion Castle, right across the road from last night's B&B


Today was another long haul for Ken. I'll know exactly how long it was when he arrives in Lahinch from Ballybunion some time around 7.30pm this evening. Our dear friend, Google, says it is 144.7 kilometres which is almost exactly what Ken cycled yesterday. However, since Google is not, I'm fairly sure, basing its calculation on WAW roads, the final figure may be a little different.

And the results are in! No, not the election results. These are far more important. Ken cycled for eight hours today. He covered 157.5 kilometres, climbed 1301 metres and used 3525 cals.

The route today was Ballybunion to Tarbert, then across by ferry to Killimer, and through Kilrush, Kilkee and Milton Malbay to Lahinch.

Or maybe that last name should be Lehinch. I saw a lot of newish looking signposts with that spelling on it rather than the older ones with the more familiar spelling.

My natural cynicism concludes that the reason for this change lies deep within the bowels of a County Office somewhere in Clare where one of the inhabitants was either bored silly or wanted to make a name for her/himself and 'discovered' that the local Gaelic dialect on which the anglicised version was based was mistranslated in 1792.

No, it turns out I am wrong but not totally mistaken. The people of the town merely have to decide whether they are half an island - Lehinch or O'Connor's tombstone - Lahinch. It's a no contest and the golf club won't change its name anyway.

Ken and I did meet up today - to have coffee in Kilrush. There was a 'Farmers' Market' taking place but the photos don't really fully back that title.


Stall at Kilrush Farmers' Market


Stall at Kilrush Farmers' Market


Ken does have an amazing knack, or maybe even 'gift', of arriving at a coffee shop just as the rain is about to pour down. I've no doubt whatsoever that he has had this gift for years, but what is even more amazing is how, over the past week or so, it has been honed so that the 'random' coffee shop at which he/we arrive inevitably have cheese cake as their speciality of the house. It was thus again this morning. Long may it continue.

As well as the immensely beautiful places in County Clare, there are sad ones as well. One of those is Doughmore Bay.

On 3rd December 1941 a British Sunderland flying boat took off from Northern Ireland on Atlantic convoy patrol. When it's radio failed it tried to land on the sea at Doughmore Bay where breakers tore off one of the boat's floats and it turned over.

Two crew members reached the shore where they were looked after by local people until the authorities arrived. The other nine died; five are buried in local graveyards, the other bodies were never found. The young Canadian captain survived only to be shot down over Germany in 1944.


Doughmore Bay


The little town of Doonbeg, on the face of it, hasn't had a whole lot going for it. It really has had quite a history. The name comes from Dun Beag meaning 'little fort' and the town can trace its origins back to the 6th century. According to Clanmacnoise's Annals, much of it was destroyed in a massive earthquake in 801 when more than 1,000 people were killed.

And now another earthquake has hit the little town; one from which it may never recover. I'll include a really nice picture as a memorial to what it looks like today.


Doonbeg Castle and bridge flower basket


And this earthquake is none other than Donald J Trump, President of the Disunited States of America, and 'Yes, folks, and not just you poor people in Doonbeg, you did hear it right - he's planning to build a wall, or rather he was planning to build a wall right around his new golf course in Doonbeg'.

However, 'the big bully' this time had bitten off more than he could chew and he finally gave up the fight around six months ago. Listen up, Mexico. You can do it too.


Spanish Point


Please don't forget that this 'road trip' does have a serious purpose. We hope to raise £4000 to finance the digging of a  well in Uganda by Fields of Life, an organisation which Ken has supported for many years, having, in the past, helped in the building of s school in Uganda.

If you would like to help in the financing of the well, please go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/missionbybike



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