Sunday, August 14, 2005

Back home

Tomorrow it's back to work, but I've finished uploading the rest of the photos from our holiday and I can't help giving it a quick last glance.

Every year is different. When we first started going to Tramore from London, seven years ago, we were still pushing strollers. This year, every child swam well enough to use the Guillamene and place bets at the Tramore Races, while the dog took much more time than a toddler.


The Guillamene (pictured) wouldn't be allowed anywhere but Ireland, and I suspect the lawyers will catch up some day. It's made up of cement platforms built into the cliffs, with sheer drops into water 40-feet deep. It's where my mother learned to swim and some of the crazier locals use year-round. The scenery is beatiful, but the water is frigid. My dive watch measured the water temperature at around 16C, though it's not accurate unless worn outside a wet suit. I'd say it was closer to 12C or so.

Some of the older children went last year, and Aidan learned to love jumping off one of the steeper sides. Our youngest took some coaxing, but she can swim well enough now to tread water and swim around, as long as I'm nearby. Theresa even went in once. Just once. And briefly.

Aidan diving

Another favorite each year is the Tramore Races, a more than 200-year-old traditional fleecing of the local population. I've been going off-and-on since I was in low single-digits and I don't think I've ever come away with any money. Fortunately, my wife and kids are better gamblers than I am. Cara won 28 euros on a 2 euro bet, while Theresa walked away with something similar. My horses, as usual, came in dead last each time I bet on them. Maybe I should start betting on the horse I think will lose?

Riding to the starting line

Sunset on the first race day

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