Friday, July 12, 2013

Irish heart!

I walked the four miles to the walled city from my hotel.I enjoyed the amble.Just outside the walled city I met a lady on the bridge walking to her hair-dresssers.She started chatting with me and directing me to the city.The city was flodded with policeman setting the security into place for the orange parade.Between the lady whose hair-dresser was shut so her primary concern was making sure I got my directions right and the policeman who walked me to the square and even put in a suggestion as to what I could do ,I walked the walls.
The walls are a window to the city of Derry,with churches within the wall.
The St.Augustine's church,St Columbus' church,prebyterian church..
One can see people assembling for the march ,all prim and proper with some gear around their shoulder.The crowd is building up with the bands playing the irish tune.
I watch the crowd from a distance and the crowd watches me.
I stroll into the crafts village where people are beginning to stir.
I peer into a glass and am greeted by a bellow of laughter.The door opens and a kindly gentleman is all information about the place with a few questions about myself.
I walk into a gift shop.Ireland is the first place in my various touristy expeditions where I have actually been tempted to buy various knick-knacks.I cannot resist a handcrafted heavy irish door knocker .
The knocker has a classic cladagh and a celtic cross at the base.
'The legend about the claddagh goes to a true tale of Richard Joyce ,swept to slavery from the little fishing village of Claddagh;of time passing and the intervening years in which Richard became a masterly goldsmith who was eventually rewarded with freedom.When at last  he returned to his beloved Cladddagh he turned his fine skills to the creation of a jewel that would be renowned as an emblem of love and friendship:two hands cradling a crowned heart.
Village of Claddagh has vanished but it's golden legacy remains' and a small piece of it,will travel with me home.
The celtic high cross is the best known symbol of early Christianity in Ireland.
I walk across to the peace bridge to the guildhall and am fascinated by the exhibition on the plantation where there are debates one can listen to ,vote for the speakers and understand life as it was then with the various dynamics with London.
The lady at the reception gives me a little insight into the parade and the demography of the place in general.The walled city apparently has more catholics and across the bridge the predominant population is protestants.
She also tells me something about Free Derry and areas around there and a tip on Giant causeway.
I decide to make the trip to the giant causeway today which would give me another day in hand to do what I like wherever.
I travel to the causeway via Bushmill.
I have never seen the volcanic rocks in my life and am fascinated by the layers of what looks like a beautifully cut stones and columns forming hillocks and more by the sea side.
There are people and more people from all walks of life come in to see the giant causeway.
I request a lady to take a photograph and she takes five.
I walk back to the museum ,go through the knickknacks and pick a small souvenier from the place.
Lunch is irish stew and bread with butter-delicious and filling.
I walk down to the bus-stop.There is another couple waiting,who help me with the timings,it is with joy we see a bus approaching ,we board it to reach the train station where I have an hour to while .I walk around the market place and then come back in time to catch the train.
Derry is full on with the procession -taxis are not commuting towards where Beach-hill country resort is.
A taxi driver stretches himself and brings me to my hotel and charges me the usual four pounds.
Back at the hotel,I can barely stand so I fall into a deep sleep.
I manage to make myself two cups of tea before I feel rested.
I ring up the reception for some extra mlk and sugar and the lady comes up with a dozen milk and a handful of sugar satchets.
There is something about the Irish,it is like as though every Irish child has been hammered the idea -'Be gracious to strangers.'
Every expression is friendly,every gesture an extra mile ,the mystery is 'how does a nation manage a feat like this?'

While scouring through the gift-shop I came across these small lockets with the alphabet of one's name on it.Each one had an Irish heart engraved.I immediately thought of a sibling of mine who has an extremely kind and generous heart.
I realise she has an Irish heart.
I bought one for her.


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