It’s official: the world is coming to an end! Even though it seems that every week there’s someone announcing the end of the world somewhere, this is not the case. I don’t believe any of them, but a whole week of sunshine in Dublin? Well, that’s something guys, I tell ya. So in disbelief of the “heat wave” and lack of rain I packed my backpack and bought a ticket to Galway. Well, if the world’s gonna end I better take a look at the West Coast before everything goes to hell.
So I started my adventure in my style, which is also known as “doing-everything-in-the-last-minute”. I missed my bus to town and almost missed the next one, so when I arrived in the city centre I had exactly 7 minutes to locate the main bus station and well, catch the bus.
At this point I’d like to say many thanks to the GPS on my phone, without you none of this adventure would be possible, because my orientation skills are total shit. ❤
So I ran and I ran and ran some more and almost went to Cork, which is pretty much on the other side of Ireland that I wanted to be on (“This is the wrong bus, love.”). So I caught the RIGHT bus by a nanosecond and without catching my breath I self high five myself in my mind and get comfortable for an almost 4 hour drive through the middle of Ireland, stone walls and sheeps guaranteed!
WARNING: Don’t start counting them, you’ll doze off and miss your stop! 😉
So finally… at the mouth of the river Corrib as it meets Galway Bay, there’s Galway. From a small towny thingy it grew into one of the most important trading posts along the western seaboard in the medieval period, trading mostly with England, Spain, France, Italy, Portugal and later on America. Blah blah nobody cares about the boring history? What about this: the origin of the name “Galway”(“Gaillimh” in Irish) is uncertain. Basically nobody knows, but everybody is guessing. So there’s this one theory that the name is derives from the name for the river: gall (stone) + amh (river) = stony river known as Corrib now. The other theory is way more mystical, uuu. There’s a local legend that the city is named after Gaillimh/Galvia, the daughter of the mythical king Breasal, who suppossedly drowned in the river.
Upon the arrival in “Ireland’s cultural heart” and on a doorstep of Gaeltacht (Galway is one of the bilingual counties where everything is as Irish as it can be and you’re more likely to hear locals speak Irish than English) I started looking for a hostel. Didn’t take me long – Bunk Hostel is a graet place with all the Banksy art on the walls and airplane seats for sofas. The receptionist turned out to be originally from Hungary so we ended up discussing all the central Europe problems and socialism this, socialism that. There was supposed to be a free walking tour in half an hour, but when nobody showed up I took everything into my own hands! And as I was super tired from the whole week I decided to just take a random stroll around town starting from the Eyre Square in the JFK park, which has no association with JFK what-so-ever (go figure!) and the famous statue of a Galway hooker and no, it’s not what you think – sorry to all the dirty minds out there – it’s a kind of ship. Apparantly. Oh, and their own brand of beer. Mmmm…
There’s usually a street performer in front of this big metal thing, as people sit on the stairs next to it and make quite an audience.
After walking around for a bit I just parked myself on one of many green areas by the river and I wasn’t the only one with an idea like that. Every little spot around the river was packed with people, most of them Americans so it felt like I’m in a colder version of California.
Days like this… Keep them coming!
Great hangout place, but when the cold breeze got to my bones I decided to find a place and warm myself up. So later that evening I found myself in a loud pub which name I cannot even pronounce in the middle of a traditional irish music session with a pint of “black stuff” in my hand. It was a perfect ending of the day and a great start of the Galway adventure!
Tig Cóilí – one of the pubs famous for traditional music sessions. The photo was taken the next day, that’s why it all looks so bright and shiny.
I met some locals and slapped an Englishman and somehow got a pint for it. I’m usually not a slapper, but this guy totally deserved it – for the things his nation did to the Irish (somebody had some lessons on Irish history, ho ho) and because he was basically a total douche. You may see that I didn’t take many photos that day, but I did capture few moments of “nightlife”, I feel like a grandma already so no parties here. 😀
Over & Out