Writing on the Roads


(Sunny day in the west)

I’m sitting in the window seat of our room overlooking a group of men painting lines on the road. They must have started before 7am. It’s so busy here during the day I suppose they don’t want to interrupt traffic. The traffic of visitors. Accidentally, we have found one of the thriving towns in Ireland. The old shop fronts are sparkling. The only one I found boarded up was being renovated. Ok it’s not perfect, there are a few places closed but they’re not boarded up, they’re waiting for their time. And now the road painting crew are out early to make the traffic run more smoothly.

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(The bustling town of Kilkee)

We’re at the seaside in the town of Kilkee in Co. Clare and when we arrived yesterday it was at its best – sun shining, buckets and spades selling, ice creams dripping, wind breakers leaning and babies eating sand. There really is an air of prosperity here. Not showy prosperity, old-fashioned prosperity. On the seafront there’s a stall selling periwinkles and just now I’ve spotted a woman on the corner selling fish from a plastic box. She has a sizeable queue forming.

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The hotel is so busy there wasn’t a table for dinner last night, but we needn’t have worried searching on google we found 18… eighteen restaurants in the town… open! No worries so. It’s nearly time for breakfast now and I hope they have a table for us but if they don’t I bet there’s plenty of cafes here.


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(There were lots of colourful old shop fronts)

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(and even the closed shop fronts are interesting)

The lady with the fish is chatting with a family – mum with a buggy and two little girls. She’s let the girls pick up the fish. The taller one is holding a fish up in the air pretending it can fly. The smaller one is running around her sister pointing and laughing. The lady is giving them a towel to wipe their hands. No fish have been sold. Instead, connections are being made.

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(Spotted this at the front of the menu last night… community is part of a vision here)


Stories will be told of holidays in Kilkee where real fish can fly, Mairead.


4 thoughts on “Writing on the Roads

  1. Ah Mairead you have such a wonderful way with words. Of the 18 restaurants, how many were vegan, and how many were “just around the corner” 😈.

    1. Well… we went for proximity and found a lovey “normal” restaurant literally across the road! But today we found a Timmy’s! At a place called Barack Obama Plaza! We took photos (to follow) and thought fondly of you and Doris xxx

  2. Ah, the memories! Thank you Mairead, for that trip down memory lane. Beautiful Kilkee, haunt of my youth. I can see the twinkling of the sun in the sea, I can smell those fish, probably mackerel, to be brought home in paper and through onto a sizzling pan. Yum! I can hear the rattle of the periwinkles and feel the bent pin in my hand ready to extract its contents. Nolans shop, with my twin friends eager to be released from shop duty where they perched on upturned crates to rifle through penny sweets and pick out the biggest for small eager customers. Oh, the boys we ogled, the golly bars we devoured, the fair rides we rode breathlessly, such wonderful summers…….I want to go back….right now…. Thank you Mairead!

  3. You are very welcome 🙂 How beautifully clear, Bairbre, I’m back there with you now! It’s the simple things, isn’t it? And just a thought away. I’ll send you some more photos when we get home to keep the memories flowing. 😉

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