End of Summer Season Fatigue on the Aran Islands is Real!!


Firstly, for the last few busy weeks of this summer season the rhythm of my island life consisted of; work, eat, sleep – on a loop!!!

I found myself unable to access the real rhythm of this stunning island, even knowing it’s powerful impact on my life, views and feelings – it seemed a world away.

As I am writing this and looking out at straw Island in Kileaney Bay, I notice that the waves are breaking white the left of the Lighthouse and when the waves break like this, we were always told that it was “Lumpy” out in the Sound. Whenever I see this and other such indicators of rough weather, my thoughts always go to my friends and neighbors out fishing. It’s not just a job, it’s a way of life – a passion. The Italians say; A life without passion is a life half lived – well, these Men are living it. I mentioned before about the unspoken and unwritten hierarchy of this Island and how I believe, the Fishermen sit Humbly at the top. The Fishermen are the princes of these Islands. The fishing families – The Joyce’s, the Hernon’s, the Flaherty’s, the Coneely’s, the O Brien’s, the Faherty’s, the Dirrane’s, the Mullen’s, the Fitzpatrick’s , and the Gill’s – are the true nobility of this Island.

I am casting my mind back to when we were kids out here and strangely enough one of my strongest memories is actually – hunger. We used to play a game at night while were tucked up in our sleeping bags – we would take turns in describing our favorite meal – Oh, the pure torture and ecstasy as someone described pouring gravy over the chicken and the stuffing but not the roast potatoes. I had a summer 2014 version of that the other day when a trader came in to me for a chat and we swapped our end of summer season wish lists and fantasies. He talked of; room service, channel surfing and sleep!!.. We laughed, mostly because it IS true.

Anyway, I found for all the above reasons that my mind was empty and it was suggested that I write about a charity swim that I started out some years ago, from Inis Meain to Inis Mor. I felt to write about such a standout moment just to fill in space would do it, and the brave people involved in what turned into a huge momentum of Island Meitheal, an injustice. Therefore, I will revisit this event when the time is right.

I also had planned to write about how I believe strongly that what one writes about must have meaning and share my experience of a chance meeting that I had with a Clare Poet who went on to become the President of Ireland – but that too will wait.

There are subtle yet powerful changes happening on this Island, we now are enjoying every wonderful day of Autumn, as we move purposefully and all too swiftly towards the familiarity of winter.

More from My Beloved Island Soon.


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