It was with a sense of sadness – and euphoria – that we laced our wet and muddy boots for our last day’s walk around the Dingle Peninsula in Ireland’s County Kerry. The “end” of something so often gives rise to both a sense of accomplishment, and nostalgia.
It was ten long days before that we had set out from Tralee by bus, and then from Camp by foot. We had spent days trudging through rains, down country lanes, into museums and shops and churches, over hills and through bogs, over mountains and across beaches. We were sore and wet and tired: ready for the walk to be over – and sorry that it was all about to finish.
Our last day was meant to be a relatively short one, on foot at least, before we were to catch the afternoon bus from Camp back to Tralee.
After a final beach walk the way winds inland back to Camp. It’s not a long day but interesting and a good section to wind down your holiday. The afternoon takes you back to Limerick via public transport from Camp.
Our first stop, after we set out from our bed and breakfast in Castlegregory, was the local Post Office to buy stamps for post cards. When we asked the elderly Postmistress if postal rates were different for Asia, Australia and North America, she seemed surprised. “There’s us, and there’s others,” she told us.
I guess that is true of most countries, but it certainly highlighted the strong Irish sense of self. We left the post office smiling, mailed our cards, and set off across the countryside.
We trudged into Camp early, but too late for the morning bus which had left an hour before. So, we resigned ourselves to a long wait at the local pub – not a bad place to be – for the afternoon bus that we were too early for.
But, the luck of the Irish was with us.
We met up with the hostess from our first night’s stay, and she graciously offered to drive us into Tralee, rather than making us wait.
So, our trip came full circle, with a reminder of the the warm generosity of the Irish people.