Thursday, September 9, 2010

We tried for lunch at "The Coffee Shop" in Louisburgh where last year for ten euro we had the most amazing pan-roasted cod, freshly cut chips and fresh peas. "The Coffee Shop" was the most nondescript restaurant one could imagine: chipped '80's tables (and very few of them), striped wallpaper in need of paste. The woman waiting tables, middle-aged, was from Holland and happy to chat. This year: out of business.

And then there was the bakery in Newport, run by some Polish women, where a slice of cake demanded UPPER CASE CHOCOLATE CAKE FONT. This year: out of business.

Empty storefronts are more the norm here than those that are occupied. The house next to us has been on the market for two years, its price dropped more than 100 euro. Times are grim. My neighbor wishes she had more land, to grow more of her own food. She has a kitchen garden, and chickens, but it's not enough.

But to brighten things: there is no tax on books in Ireland.


Good news from the homefront today re: the state of my son's heart. All Is Well. Few things could fill me with joy at this moment more than that fact. He's got his life back. I can truly let go of those shards of worry.


Heading up to Achill Island and there is a tease of sunshine. Do I dare hang towels on the line?


  1. I quite expect you meant €100,000.

    Ireland's economy went haywire a few years back. From being almost a 3rd world country to being extremely prosperous took only a short while. Everything went far too quickly and they're now paying the price. Sad.

  2. We visited Ireland at the peak of the Celtic Tiger Economy...sounds like it has gone the way of the rest of the world.
    Happy, happy news of your son. There is nothing more precious than a child's health.

  3. Cro, exactly! There should be a "k" after that "100".

  4. I had asked K about the economy and how he was seeing it.

    What you describe is what we are seeing everywhere here in the U.S. too. I'd heard quite a few of the immigrants to Ireland from eastern Europe had gone home, because it was better to be poor at home with family than out of work elsewhere.

    I'm listening to the nightly public radio economic news program via streaming right now. It is saying that as of today things are looking better here concerning jobs and exported goods.

    But from hour to hour, just about, from source to source, it's all been so contradictory for so many years I don't believe anything any longer coming from these sources.

    Love, C.

  5. Hang the towels. Worst thing that can happen is they're still wet when you get home!

    So. I guess it's safe to say you won't be moving to Ireland and opening a bakery?