Some Small Things: Travel (Glencolumbkille, Ireland)

Have you resumed travel yet?

I haven’t.

But I just found out I will be. I’m going to India in March on a Fulbright IEA grant.

And now I’ve got the travel bug.

So I decided to thumb through my travel photos and pick some of my favorite small things to share. Here’s one:

Glencolumbkille (Gleann Cholm Cille) is situated in the north of the Irish Republic. It’s a coastal town in County Donegal and part of the Gaeltacht region, which is an Irish-speaking community. I visited in 2018 when I spent a week at an Irish language school named Oideas Gael. The experience often felt like an episode of Ballykissangel, once my favorite TV show.

B&B Glencolumbkille Ireland
B&B in Glencolumbkille

The school booked me a room in a local B&B, and as it turns out, I was to share it with three men who were also students at the school. They didn’t want to interact with me much. One was a teacher who was participating in the course to get his license. Another was there for leisure to learn more about his country’s language.

The third said this after I sneezed one day: “God be with us, and not with you.”

That’s memorable.

Here they are walking together to school without me. ๐Ÿ™

Walking to Irish Language School in County Donegal
Walking to school without me

So, needless to say, I was left to my own devices. And that was OK. I enjoyed the solitude and peace of the 1.5 mile walk to and from the school every day.

One afternoon, as I am known to do, I tried to engage the sheep in conversation — even in their native Irish.

Speaking in Irish to Donegal sheep

They wouldn’t engage.

I got lost on the way home that day, meandering down a few wrong paths despite the proprietor’s advice to always keep the church in front of me.

When I finally arrived back at the B&B, there were all these guys on the lawn, bahing away. The sheep’s bah is, by far, my favorite animal sound. At around 10 seconds, a guy with a particularly deep bah chimes in.

The melodious bah

Without warning, the sheep starting charging at me! That’s why the video ends all crazily.

I ran inside. Then probably took my dinner on my own.

Thanks for reading! Have you been to County Donegal? Spoken with the sheeps? Enjoy their bah? Plan to travel soon?

Say some things.

If you enjoyed this post on Glencolumbkille, you may like this one about Fair Isle Socks.

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  1. Congrats on the Fulbright IEA grant! Also your adventures in Ireland look lovely! Can’t wait to see what you get up to in India!

    I recently “traveled” to a conference in Vermont where I unfortunately caught COVID. I say “traveled” because it was only a 4 hour drive and I mostly stayed at the resort. But it was so nice to be in a new space even if I didn’t really do too much exploring. And it was so great to interact with new people which is probably one of the best parts about traveling. I am currently isolating (almost done) and dog/house sitting out in the Poconos while I finish up my dissertation. While I have not been interacting with people it is great because I have the space to get outside and explore. I haven’t seen any sheep out here but I have been talking to the neighboring cows. ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. So sorry – I thought I had replied. The comments feature often doesn’t work for me here.

      In any event, thank you! And I saw that you caught Covid, so sorry. I love conferences — it’s one of the things I’ve missed the most during the pandemic. Glad you were able to isolate in a beautiful place and with a dog! And writing! So glad to hear I’m not the only one who talks to farm animals. ๐Ÿ™‚

Say some things.