Day 43b: Halfway Home (BBW16 Ormond Way: Milestone-Templederry)

We continued on from Upperchurch, wending our way through fields and forests.

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More pastoral beauty

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A short detour up to a signboard that Jim had helped to create

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Hedge schools again! And massive famine-prompted emigration…

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Onward through the grass

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More distant glimpses of our target hill thanks to zoom (the one on the left has the Templederry road)

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Friendly cattle – having Jim along to determine relative bovine safety was very nice

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Out through the trees

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And here is where those neat rows of trees get turned into neat rows of logs

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Cattle slats make good cheap bridges

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Cutecalf

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Jim looking out towards the continually nearing hill of destination

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Spring fed wells that supply many farm fields

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Jim’s fields and farms!

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River crossings

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Jim with a monument to a now defunct local hurling team, made up of members from three local parishes before teams were limited along parish lines

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Apparently this was another of Matt Ryan’s pet projects, which took years to get in place

As we had descended from the heights overlooking Jim’s farm, he’d called ahead to his wife to let her know we were getting close. This ballooned into a whole experience – his wife Eileen came down and picked us up at the intersection with this hurling monument, and shortly thereafter I was sitting around the Kennedy’s dinner table with Jim, Eileen, and their son Trevor, eating chicken and beans and bread and potatoes and drinking more milk than I entirely intended. We ate and chatted for some time, but eventually Jim and I had to tear ourselves away for the last few miles of our day’s walk.

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The next hill is the hill we have been chasing all day! At last!

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Templederry in the distance

On our final stretch down into town, we met up with Jim’s cousin Donnell Mackey (sorry Donnell if I am messing up the spelling!) who would be my walking companion the following day. And finally, we arrived in town, our day’s journey complete. It was getting on late when we arrived, and Matt took me back to the B&B fairly promptly. I did not venture out around Silvermines this time – simply made a few notes for this blog, read a bit, and fell asleep.

Today marks the halfway point in my time in Ireland – 43 out of 86 days gone. It feels very strange to realize that I have as long left in Ireland as has already elapsed… but also to know that the time remaining will soon be eclipsed by the time that has passed.

I have seen enough now to know I have no idea what sorts of things may happpen in the time I have left. And I have experienced enough now to almost be at peace with that fact.

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