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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Everyone's Got A Little Irish Inside...

This weekend is officially the beginning of spring, so the snowflakes are gone, and the blog colors have changed!

Today's post has very little to do with our New World project up near Grand Marais. But don't worry, I'll find some connection! In honor of St. Patrick's Day, here are a few pictures from our trip to Ireland in May of 2005, where everyone can be Irish, even someone half Polish and mostly the rest Scot (and a teensy bit Irish) like me, or nearly purebred Norwegian, with a whiff Danish, like Val (ya, you betcha, she's a Viking Gal!)...

This is the main drag in the village of Ballyvaughan, where our walking and poetry trip in the western county of Clare in Ireland was centered. FYI, Monk's Pub had great fish and chips...

Here's a view of the countryside in County Clare...
good fences make good neighbors, as Mr. Frost said...

...indigenous wildlife...

...never found out if there was a pot o' gold out there...

...but we did discover O'Lochlan's, the local "whiskey pub," where we were instructed in the fine art of sipping "a wee splash." Good thing it was only a block from our cottage. We discovered that Jameson's is considered the local version of rot-gut whiskey. Much more palatable...and expensive...and impossible to find in the US...were brands such as Green Spot, Tyrconnell and Midelton's... mmmm.... and that trip to Ireland led to Irish whiskey finding such a warm place in our hearts, as you who are reading this blog already know...

Now, for a completely different "Welcome Spring" experience, in 2008 I dragged Val to Kearney, Nebraska to see the annual sandhill crane migration as they pause along the Platte River to refuel on their way north. Here we are just about to enter this lovely photo blind, where we spent an extremely cold and claustrophobic night, all for the privilege of watching 300,000 big birdies... What you won't do for love, right?

And here they are, starting to gather at sunset...

...a whole mess of cranes, by air, by water and by land...
And a Platte River sunset, complete with cranes.
Take a look at this website (also a link along the side) best viewed early mornings and late in the day, just after sunset. Even if the picture isn't up and running, just listen...
this is the Rowe Sanctuary web cam on the Platte... wow...

http://www.rowesanctuary.org/crane%20cam.html
So, what's the connection to Kathy and Val's New World at Cascade Bluff? There isn't one, except the sandhill cranes will be flying over the north woods during the next weeks, on their way toward the arctic where most of them nest... and they are so beautiful!

See you in a few weeks...

1 comment:

  1. Cool! Love the stories and great pics! Thank you! JKS

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