Be Careful What You Ask For (or the kindness of strangers)

28 05 2013

There is a saying, “be careful what you ask for, you might get it.” We tend to look for vacations with a bit of adventure. Today we got it.

We were cycling in the Dingle Peninsula. Almost as far from our B&B as possible, about as far away from our tour support person as we could be, when the bike stopped working. Pedalling was easy but we were going nowhere. The main chain had broken!

You need to know, we own six bikes and have cycled thousands of kms. We have never broken a chain, ever.

Trying to fix the chain.

Trying to fix the chain.

Unfortunately, we left our chain repair kit at home. We began walking, a couple of kms later we got to a cafe and asked for help. An elderly gentleman came out and looked, thought it would be a simple fix and left us to it. We were unsuccessful and ready to call a taxi. He wouldn’t give up. “Just let me finish my Guiness and we’ll head to my shop”. It started to rain, we ordered tea, he had a second Guiness. To make a long story short, we eventually got the bike back together and went on our way. Filan (sp?) refused to take any money and only said it was nice to be useful.

Filan

Filan

Filan is not the only one to show us a bit of extra kindness. I’m not sure if it’s the bike, but one of our hosts drove us into town so we could get supper and another actually did a load of laundry for us!

The other thing we will remember of this day is our visit to castle ruins. This castle is marked on the map as a place for tourists to visit. In our North American thinking, we were expecting a large parking lot, well maintained grounds, an interpretive centre and of course a ticket booth. What did we find? A car park mostly filled with road building materials, a stone fence to clamour over, cow paddies to avoid and a single sign. No ticket booth. No other people.

The castle at Carrigaholt.

The castle at Carrigaholt.

By the way, it was cold and windy, it rained about four times during the day. Hot showers at the end of the day feel really good!

But, today, we never fell off!

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