Musings

Irish lessons, subtly

Cong cloister

Another day, another religious complex in ruins. Here’s one corner of the cloister interior at Cong Abbey. The Irish is Cúnga Fheichín, meaning St Féchín’s narrows. The narrows refer to the river, I’m guessing. The waterways around the abbey go underground and appear braided. Complex, anyway.

Cong fish house

This “fish house” is an unusual surviving monastery feature. My understanding is that the underneath had a net hung inside it, and the fish were retrieved through a trap door in the floor. The area around Cong is where “The Quiet Man” (1952) was filmed–John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara.

Ballinrobe street

This banner over the street in Ballinrobe says: Welcome to (you got that part, I’m sure) Music Festival Mayo. Mayo is two words in Irish—Mhaigh Eo—which means yew trees, and yew trees are loaded with sacred qualities, very special. Oak trees, too.

Lots of place-names begin Bally– or Balli– like this. The Irish is Baile and it means town, although GooTranslate indicates it means home, also. Interesting cultural implications of that.

Also, place-names that end in –more in English may be from the Irish mór, which means big. Toponyms are such fun!

Pontoon sign

It seems the English mimics the Irish Pont Abhann in some abstract way, as Abhann means river/fluvial and has a different sound than “oon”. Another linguistic abuse by the English….

DeVanneys Bar Lahardane

Just liked the way this looked. I couldn’t tell for sure if it is still open.

Seacliffs n DunBriste

That haystack at the end of this peninsula is Dun Briste, meaning broken fort (fort in the sense that this point is naturally fortified by being almost surrounded by the sea; broken is obvious). The English name highlights something totally different; it is Downpatrick Head.

Ceide Fields ocean view

This row of stones exposed from where the peat buried it was a fence-wall thousands of years ago, built by people who cut the forest to begin farming here six millennia ago. Why did peat form here? Scientists aren’t certain, but the current hypothesis is that by cutting the trees, it changed the soil chemistry and created an iron-rich layer that kept the water table high and meant that any plants had to be tolerant of the iron-rich condition to grow, which favored heather and sphagnum and the like. They grew and died and new offspring grew in the same spots, and the moisture and repeated generations meant peat could form.

The large size of the fields and the pollen that has been identified as contemporaneous with the field walls indicate that the fields were pastures, used for cattle and not crops. Very interesting.

Can you guess that it was windy windy windy when we visited Ceíde Fields? Can you guess that is Ceíde pronounced kay-ja? Yup, no “d” at all.

Factory Ballina

I’m pretty sure this is an abandoned factory. Not all ruins we note are darned old.

Cnoc na Riabh view

Another high view of the velveteen green, this time with more trees and houses. This is near Sligo, from the flank of the mountain called Cnoc na Riabh, meaning hill of…well, knowledgable people argue about of what. Cnoc is hill, no doubt about it. I keep trying to come up with a Cnoc-Cnoc joke….

Sligo tides out

And here the tide is out in Sligo. The Irish name of the river (originally) and the town is Sligeach, meaning abundant shells, meaning the river was rich in shellfish, and maybe fish in general. Don’t know about now.

Rainy day adventures

Velveteen cape

This is a crappy shot to illustrate what I’ve been calling the velveteen cape—the apparent piecework of fields and the green hedges that separate them. When it’s a big expanse of the landscape, and you’re a bit above it, the rolling contours and the fields really look like a textured quilt to me.

Stone field walls

In contrast, when the fields are demarcated by stone walls, I no longer see a giant cape. Still eye-catching, but different.

Cliffs of moher view south

One of our big points-of-interest for the day was the Cliffs of Moher. Only it was rainy and windy, too rainy to make it worth €6 apiece to join the crowds released from buses to fight our way against a headwind to the overlook to hang over the fence to take a picture before turning tail and scooting back across the road to the parking area. Are we wimps?

Doolin ireland

Instead, we explored one-and-a-half lane roads and small towns we would have skipped to “do” the Cliffs, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. This town is named Doolin.

Cahermacnaghten cashel

Eventually we cut inland and visited a stone cashel/fort. This cashel was among the domiciles of a minor sept, the O’Davoren family, Brehon lawyers for their overlords, the O’Loughlins, lords of Burren, and both the popular and academic literature places their law school at this cashel. However, recent research indicates the law school buildings were not in the cashel, but less than a kilometer away occupying a complex of buildings that seems more suitably sized for such an institution. O’Davorens did live here in the 16th and 17th Cs; as negotiators for their superiors, they were well-connected to the greater world far beyond this area, which had a far greater population than it does today.

The name of this place in English is Cahermacnaghten; the Irish name is Cathair Mhic Neachtain. This fortified homestead was first built long before the period of the Brehon law school.

Burren stone

The Burren is an area of rolling limestone hills and stone surfaces exposed by glaciation in this part of western Ireland. This particular area is next to the sea. I saw one place where blocks had been removed, no doubt for building stone—very blocky. The blocks are called clints and the fissures are called grykes/grikes/scailps. There’s poetry in these words!

Burren uplands

From what we saw of the uplands, the “pavement” quality is not as extensive—it looks like grey rubble here. Note that the lower areas are green, and we hypothesized that considerable labor had been invested to remove the rocks. Apologies for the crappy snap; it was the best of the crop.

Athenry corner

Here’s a left-or-right choice in Athenry, a town east of Galway that we visited because it has notable surviving medieval city wall.

Athenry medieval city wall

Here is the wall behind the cud-chewing cattle. There’s a ditch outside the wall (green bushy vegetation), and I think traces of piled soil outside of that. Anyway, for a tourist calling card, the wall receives no emphasis whatsoever, and no good access. I think all that light grey outlining the stones indicates recent reconstruction…which is fine. But.

Galway harbor

We are rolling through Galway by the harbor, excuse me harbour. I don’t remember an in-town light-up sign before, and it caught my eye. Coming into cities, we have seen light-up signs that list the names of the parking areas and the number of open spaces. Very handy!

Ballroom floor dust

And now for something completely different. Three somethings. This is a powder or dust that apparently was applied to ballroom floors to make it the right amount of slippery for dancers. Dundalk is on the east shore of the island and we are on the west. This bag was in a display in an “antiques” shop window.

Sams lemon drizzle handbag

Here’s what’s called a Sams Lemon Drizzle Handbag, a cleverly folded package for a cake, handcrafted in Ireland.

Rent an Irish Cottage

This cracked me up when I found it while navigating. Someone has slipped a little joke past GooMaps.

Seaviews, churches, more

Castlemaine strand

We missed the pre-breakfast rainbow; B&B lady said it was a complete arc. Ah well, the strand and the sea were still eye-catching.

Biker running dog

Lots of non-car/truck activity on the road today…celebrating the lord’s day? Here’s a biker running his dog.

Sheep lamb

And a sheep “airing” her lamb.

Waves crashing on rocks

From an Iron Age promontory fort (on a small point high above the sea), we watched the waves crashing on the rocks.

Gallarus oratory

Gallarus Oratory is an early christian church, the official sign says, dating to the 7th/8th C AD. People say it’s “boat-shaped”—meaning an upside-down boat. It’s mortarless, and the craftsmanship to shape the stones and fit them with a slight slope to keep the water out is stunning.

Dingle sportsbar

I found the dramatic sun-brightened color of this sports-bar in Dingle marvelous.

Conor Pass view N

From Dingle we angled north to cross the spine of the Dingle Peninsula. From the pass the views, both north and south, were breath-taking. This is the view north; there’s a good chunk of ocean before you hit land at another bit of Ireland.

Abbeyfeale fundraiser

In Abbeyfeale the traffic situation got bottlenecked with cyclists. Over 400 participated in a fundraiser for the town, and these fellows collected more €€€€/cash.

In Limerick, we toured King John’s Castle. It dates to ~1200, when the Magna Carta King John ordered it built to cement holdings gained by Anglo-Normans through violence beginning in this area in 1172. It’s on the River Shannon, which demarcated the Irish petty kingdoms to the west and Anglo-types to the east. This is the original great hall of the fort. Sometime after it was built it was knocked down and a new one was built on its rubble. Note how high the current “floor” of the castle is now. This rebuilding process effectively preserved the older architecture.

This is the view toward the River Shannon from the fortification in the top of the above photo. The wind was stiff and two fishermen and a swam were working the near shoreline.

This is a bonus-abbey…meaning we ate dinner then strolled around it a bit. Most of the massive architecture dates to the 14th and 15th Cs. The footprint of this church is larger than many we have seen. If you check out satellite photos, you can see the outlines of more structures that were part of the Quin Abbey complex (it’s here: 52.819196, -8.862977).

It didn’t rain ALL day

DerrycunihyChurch

We awoke to soft rain. High on a hill/mountain, this church was still below the clouds.

Torc waterfall

On the other side of the mountain, we checked out a waterfall. There are several along the “edge” of this landform. We walked in rain to check it out.

Clouds n mountains

And, farther down the peninsula, we could see out over the ocean was clearer than where we were driving.

Cattle n cowherdess

Down a narrow lane, we waited for the cowherd-ess to move her charges along. Moo.

Staigue fort exterior

And, at the end of the road…a stone fort. These date to the early Christian through late medieval periods, in general.

Staigue fort interior

The stones are stacked carefully, with sloping walls interior and exterior, and the space between filled with chips and smaller stones. In the interior, the stones are set to allow easy ascent. No building remains survive inside Staigue Fort.

Brackaharagh beach

Downhill, we found striking blue waters in this harbor in the Brackaharagh townlands.

Skellig Bay

Off on another narrow side road, heading for Loher stone fort…. Go mall is Irish for slow(ly).

Loher stone fort

Inside this fort, partial walls of several buildings survive.

Loher fort door

The interior of the fort slopes so that water drains out the single doorway. This seems true of all of these stone forts.

Leacanabuaile n sheep

A bit more of a drive and a bit of a walk, and we stroll through sheep to Leacanabuaile stone fort. This one has wide walls with turf atop.

Leacanabuaile interior

Same for the interior building ruins…. This two-room building had a square-ish first room and a round interior room.

Ballycarbery drone

Droney and the Guru took this photo of Ballycarbery Castle. It’s huge. Note that the sun is out! The ivy covering the walls is old, with a substantial “trunk.”

Ballycarbery ivy stems

This is the “trunk” structure of the ivy on the right end of the building in the drone shot. Maybe “substantial” is too tame to describe this proliferation.

Killorglin traffic circle

Apache pizza? Cross-cultural food? Find this culinary treat on the traffic circle in Killorglin.

Castlemaine Harbour double rainbow

Modest B&B tonight. Spritely owner looks to be in her early 70s. She has lived here all her life. In this building. Brought up here. Modified to be a B&B by her carpenter/builder husband. And this is our view. An hour later we got fierce rain for about four minutes.

Now darkness is descending.

No theme, “just” visuals

Kinsale marina parking

I figure these are the parking spaces for drunk-testing. Notice how unused they are. This is Castlepark Marina, across from Kindle.

Kinsale Jamess Fort

This old fort opposite Kindle is heavily visited by people letting their dogs run…many happy dogs. Across the River Bandon is a much larger, later fort that most tourists visit. This one is on a lovely spit of land that had a medieval fort before construction began on this fort in 1602. This is the inner architecture and its wall. The outer perimeter is grassy and lumpy these days.

Timoleague abbey

On down the way, this is the central area of the Timoleague abbey church ruin.

Timoleague abbey new grave

People are still being planted here, within the former buildings, except right where the altar was. I could hardly drag my eyes away from the plastic bag carefully protecting the cross on this recent grave.

Timoleague wart well

By the sacristy/in the sacristy was this stone labeled “wart well.” In case you were wondering. The internet records various methods of using water from the wart well to cure…warts.

Clonakilty street

The old medieval main street of Clonakilty.

Rosscarbery market square

Nolan’s on the market square of Rosscarbery. The hanging sign reads “Guinness for strength.”

Drombeg architecture

Far left distance: Drombeg stone circle, dated to the later Bronze Age. Far left foreground: bluebells. Central: two stone foundations; one is circular with a central rectangular “box” and circular “well”; the other is two conjoined circles, probably a two-room domestic structure. These features may not have been contemporaneous. They are on a flat landform that is high on the slope of a hill that seems a strange choice to me. It does have a good view of the sea (right, out of shot).

Drombeg Holsteins

Ladies checking out tourists walking to and from Drombeg. The Irish is An Drom Beag, meaning small ridge. Perhaps someone else thought this the location a bit odd.

Skibbereen market square

Market square, Skibbereeen. There’s a somewhat famous folk song about how those who left the island because of the famine pined for Ireland that uses the name Skibbereeen.

Baltimore beacon

Beacon just past Baltimore harbor. That’s the open ocean in the center of the photo, and a lighthouse on the opposite landform. Yes, it was windy. And the wildflowers were slightly different than inland locales we have visited.

Waterfall pool

It’s been so dry that the waterfall above this pool was a big trickle. Loved the pool and its reflection.

Double tunnel

We found this double-tunnel while crossing the Béarra/Beara peninsula near the boundary of Kerry and Cork counties.

Kenmare butcher dog

This dog in Kenmore is making a great choice—to keep watch/nap outside the butcher shop. Far wiser than outside the woolen goods store or the pharmacy, I’d say.

Pairs

Kells priory 12th sanctorum 15th

One way to look at today is that there were pairs…of medieval monastic/church complexes and harbor-cities.

Kells p river

These first two photos are of Kells priory. This one was founded in the 12th C by Anglo-Normans—some of the ruins inside the wall. Then, the wall was added in the 15th C, and the whole thing was attacked in the Dissolution in the 16th C. Anyway, the ritual architectural core is next to River Kings, and the adjacent settlement was on the slope above and the hill to the south.

Rock of Cashel cathedral complex

Here’s another 12th-C cathedral complex in ruins. It was sacked a bit later, in the 17th C, and some well-meaning??? Englishman had the roof removed in the 18th C. You can guess my take on that.

Rock of Cashel view of town

This one, however, is atop a limestone outcrop, very dramatic. It also has a wall, but mostly the defensiveness is due to the bedrock it is built upon. Here’s the view of town from just a few feet from the cathedral ruin.

Such different choices…next to the water and the riverine transportation network vs atop a defensible peak. Supply lines are different. These aren’t far apart in space, and the surviving architecture overlaps temporally….

Cobh harbour

Here’s a view of Cobh harbor. This was the last port of call of the doomed “Titanic,” in 1912. Uncounted Irish set sail from here for the New World, hoping, as is often said, for a better life. I think of Cobh as the outer harbor area in the same estuary as Cork, which is in a more protected location farther inland–but doesn’t have the deep draft for larger “modern” ocean-going vessels.

Upriver Cobh toward Cork

This is the estuary between Cobh and Cork, and there’s a car ferry that goes between the two cities traversing the River Lee in the shot. Notice how the overcast has set in; we have lost the sunshine we’ve had since we arrived (where’s my raincoat gotten to?).

Cork south out of medieval city area

We’re headed south over the bridge that is where the bridge was in medieval times, exiting Cork to the south. The plan of walled medieval Cork survives as narrow streets and bottle-necked traffic. Charming layout, slightly gritty city (or is the overcast skewing my perceptions?).

Ponder these two cities. One (Cobh) is nearer the open ocean and has a deep harbor, an advantage in “modern” times. The other is farther inland, at the farthest downstream that crossing the rivers that forked around the city was relatively easy. Cork was a Viking stronghold far later than most Viking cities in Ireland; the Vikings liked to be inland of the river-mouth, with the security the protected location offered. Archaeologists have found another Viking settlement with ironworking and other crafting even farther upstream, which was unanticipated and suggests that, at least here, the Vikings located activities that required expensive materials even farther inland in an even safer location.

Kinsale book shop

We kept rolling south to Kinsale. I like that this shop offers bibliotherapy. Maybe you’ve heard of it, but I haven’t.

Fancy dinner Kinsale

We even had a fancy fish dinner in Kinsale. Delightful and tasty. For dessert, I swooned over my crème brûlée, and the Guru’s pavlova and strawberries was gorgeous and seductive.

BB view

And score another fine B&B for us. This is the view from our room—ignore the overcast….

“Windswept tree…”

Ferns abbey cathedral

Foreground: ruins of medieval (13th C?) cathedral at Ferns. Five window arches survive on one side, and one on the other. Rear: current mostly 19th-C church.

Winsome trio

Wexford winsome trio.

Painted faux highcross

Dublin schoolgirls learning about high crosses at heritage park (HP). “Monk” guide did a great job.

Jcb waterbirds

The Guru captured a heron and friend in the crannog’s lake at the HP.

Windswept tree

Stenciled quote (lines skipped) from Hávamál on wall at HP.

Emo petrol

Emo petrol? Killeens swirls?

Tintern Minor abbey church

Tintern Abbey; that is: Tintern Minor abbey. Much modified, but most of “the bones” of what we see is probably 16th C. Used as a residence until 1959.

Hay baling

Today was busy-farm-equipment day, including many tractor-rigs on the road. Two days ago, it was paint-your-front-fence day—we saw three being painted and one being pressure-washed‚ none before or since.

No junk mail

I want this label!

Drone view

The Guru made Droney fly for the third time here.

9pm light

Given that the iPhone darkens a shot like this, you must compensate. I could easily read a book in the ambient light, although it seems darker in this version. This was at 9:02pm. And it’s light out very early, too.

Good night, all.

History unknown

Foggy morn dog patrol

This morning, fog shrouded the horse farm where we stayed last night. Love the dog on patrol.

Peat drainage turves

As we rolled out, we came across another mechanized peat harvest area. I think the depth of the drainage ditch indicates how deep the harvest of peat will extend. Across the road, it looked like at least six feet (vertically) had been removed. Now there’s a national movement to clean up the air by limiting coal and peat burning in residential and noncommercial buildings.

StBs CofI Kildare

We made our first stop at St Brigid’s Cathedral in Kildare. Brigid lived from ~453 to 523. She founded a monastery here in ~480. This building dates to 1223, and has substantial 19th-C reconstruction. There’s an odd rectangular area outlined by a low wall in the churchyard that is called the Fire Temple (rebuilt last in 1988, I read), marking where it’s believed that nuns kept an eternal flame going to honor St Brigid. It’s somewhat like Rome’s Vestal Virgins, no?

History unknown

Loved this sign on a strange nubbin of architecture—Remains of Vault…History Unknown.

StB detail

I could not figure out this grotesque downpipe detail on the church. Aviator goggles? Bull or cow around the neck?

Tesco stay right

Next stop: Tesco for “triangle” sandwiches and snacks. I was astounded that patrons must “stay right” on the travelator. This is a drive-left country…although pedestrians may pass right or left…adding to my confusion.

Brigid statue at well

Just south of Kildare is a pilgrimage destination, St. Brigid’s well. It’s relatively elaborate. We had to wait on a busload of pilgrims (from Texas, from what they said) to walk past our parking space before we could exit along the narrow lane.

Curragh sheep

These sheep are browsing on The Curragh. Curragh means race-course. In ancient times it was a common. Much of the time it was used as sheep pasture, but also as a general rendezvous for mustering military forces. The earliest reference dates to the 10th C, and old documents indicate an óenaig (periodic fairs, wake games) was held here. So, it was a multipurpose space not owned by a particular person. What’s left of The Curragh has a formal racecourse where the Irish national races are held, a military base, and still has grazing sheep. The Luftwaffe bombed it on 2 Jan 1941.

Irish National studs

Part of The Curragh also has stables, etc., of the Irish National Stud, where Thoroughbreds are bred; the facility includes several gardens (why?).

Wicklow gap area

Next, we headed into the Wicklow Mountains! We went through Wicklow gap (near here), 478 meters. This looks very like moorland in Scotland and England.

Glendalough Upper Lake

The east side of the pass descends to Glendalough, or Gleann Dá Loch meaning valley of two lakes. This is the larger, upper lake. I’m facing the main drainage into the lake. Note Mr. Mallard. Mrs. Mallard is busy feeding in the reeds and not showing herself.

Reefert Church Glendalough

There’s a huge monastic complex here, well known and heavily visited—an easy day-trip from Dublin. We saw many school-kids, high-school age, and heard them speaking Irish Gaelic. This was the 11th-C Reefert Church, way off to the west from the core of the monastic complex. I quite enjoyed this ruin as we visited it alone, no hubbub of visitors in this area of old trees and bird-calls.

Oxalis acetosella shamrock

I found many of these wildflowers with trifoliate compound leaves. I know it’s the common wood sorrel (Oxalis acetosella), but for today it’s the shamrock (generally accepted to be a clover).

SallyGap sheep

We also made a loop up to Sally Gap, the next pass north of Wicklow. We found these half-grown lambs and their momma enjoying the heights and dining on the roadside grass. Most of the “wild” vegetation is gorse and heather, so this is the best grazing. The heights also have many peat-harvest scars.

View east near SallyGap

This is the view back toward Glendalough. We found the haze denser with the elevation and think the late afternoon hour also contributed to it. Stunning.

Aon scoitheadh

Wild strawberry

I told the Guru I wasn’t going to write much today…so, mostly photos. Wild strawberry.

Holsteins on Uisneach

Holsteins arriving at fence at end of new pasture area. Bawling. This is atop an early medieval place of major importance called Uisneach. The scale of the hilltop with scattered features was difficult to grasp even standing there. Just think of it as the cattle site.

Cattle management structure

Our access to the hilltop passed by this somewhat mysterious cattle management structure.

No passing

I laughed that someone thought it necessary to mark this one-and-a-half lane road with an aon scoitheadh sign—no passing.

Sheep on Rathcroghan

I’m standing on another major architectural feature. Me and this momma sheep and her two babes, one black, one white. Think of it as the sheep site. The formal name is Rathcroghan.

Rathra property line cut

I guess this one might be the person site? It’s called Rathra, and I think this is an old field boundary cutting through the early medieval ring fort. It has two pairs of wall-ditch combos to my left and right. Also you can see a barrow mound just visible over the walls to my left. Darned exciting.

Severe bends snapshot

We laughed at this sign. Crappy snapshot, however.

Clonmacnoise river view

We stopped at the famous monastery ruin named Clonmacnoise. Here’s a view of the oldest structure here (foreground), called Temple Ciarán. It dates to the 8th/9th C, and is considered among the earliest mortared stone shrine chapels in Ireland. That’s the Shannon River in the background; there was a bridge across it as early as ~804. The Guru sent Drony on a mission here getting a great view of a nearby 1214 Anglo-Norman motte-and-bailey castle ruin on the riverbank.

Peat turves drying

We happened upon turves of peat drying. These are regular shapes from mechanized harvesting. Several (parts of) bog people have been found during such operations.

Clara abandoned factory

This abandoned factory is the town of Clara. We spotted another one, too. On the way into town, we drove by the ruins of a monastery. St Brigid founded the original wooden monastery, records indicate. Clara seems pretty resilient; keep on biking.

Sunday drive

Kells churchyard

It’s Sunday, so perhaps somehow fitting that we should begin today’s excursion at a churchyard. Another high cross…more burials. Flowers.

Bluebells

Bluebells, in this case.

Kells roundtower

This is the highest hill in Kells, and the oldest building remaining in the compound is the round tower, most of which still stands. Everyone seems compelled to point out that while most such towers have four window-openings at the top, this one has five—one for each of the main roads leading into town (and away from it, duh).

Canola road row

And, we’re off again. Colors—canola yellow flowers, red car, green vegetation, grey road. Yeah, a snapshot.

Tara earthworks

This is some of the earthworks at Hill of Tara, commonly called Tara, just as Margaret Mitchell used it in “Gone with the Wind.” Too much complicated archaeology to even broach it. Take it merely as intricate visual candy, and admire the ancient ones who planned and created this.

River bridge

Here’s a little swoopy stone bridge over a river/creek.

Trim castle keep

This is the keep of Trim Castle; it’s the largest Anglo-Norman castle on this big island. It was here by 1175, replacing an earlier wooden fortified structure. Life hustled and bustled in the area surrounding the keep and within the curtain walls (completed ~1200)—craftsmen and servants, knights and merchants—and stables, a lime kiln, and so on. The castle offered sufficient security that the town outside the walls became substantial.

Stonewall fern

Loving these little ferns that have taken hold in the castle wall. And are degrading it.

Road approaching HILLS

We push on. We are looking for hills. Aha! There are some! We’re still in the Boyne Valley, but we’re inland and nearing the edge of the catchment.

Lane grass center

Off on a “leetle” road. I’d call it a lane. With grass overtaking the center.

Gorse blossoms

And, off to the right: gorse! Here’s a cluster of gorse blossoms close up.

Loughcrew cairn

We climbed a little hill this morning at Tara. This one, with some of the Loughcrew cairns atop, requires much more effort. And, on the summit: another Neolithic passage tomb. Signs around it urge “No Climbing.” The accent of every person I heard climbing the mound: Irish. It’s their patrimony…. We stayed on the ground surface. Plenty to see from this hilltop—you can get a hint of how high we are by the distant view in the horizon to the left. Sunny and gorgeous. Beautiful day.

Pink wildflower

I don’t know what this flower is called; I found it in the hedgerow as I stopped to catch my breath.