Thursday, 26 May 2016

Learning the Language (Not)

We camped for over a week at Dungloe. It's dead easy to find on a map because of Arranmore Island. It was the only caravan site Bill could find in that area and it was fine; very handy for the town. One of my first challenges was to pronounce the name properly. I caused more than a few smiles by saying Dun-GLOW. They say it Dung-LO. Subtle difference, but for them apparently a big one.

Our first morning we visited the tourist information centre which used to be a Catholic church but was now the town library / information centre. One of the ladies there said she was distantly related by marriage to someone by the family name I was after. She said it with a rather strained expression. Turns out he is known for his tall tales, so not perhaps not a great source for genealogical information. She didn't seem to know that family history was a major American hobby or that DNA testing was available. I couldn't imagine I would be the first to inquire about this, but perhaps I was the first in her experience. She did help me out by correcting my pronunciation of Braade: not Braid, but Bradge, rhymes with Madge.

We picked up a few maps with some walking / cycling / driving trails marked, but as for determining distances or reading place names, they weren't very helpful. They didn't think they had an Ordnance Survey map, though on a later visit we found they did. Still not as complete as one would wish. I would be armed with Google Maps and Google Earth if I were to try navigating there again. That's the map on which I could find Rannyhual.

However, we were pretty safe walking up and down Main Street in DungLo. I spotted a craft shop called The Erratic Makers, named for the erratic boulders that are fairly common in the area. Bill explained this term to me, but I looked up again:

A glacial erratic is a piece of rock that differs from the size and type of rock native to the area in which it rests. "Erratics" take their name from the Latin word errare, and are carried by glacial ice, often over distances of hundreds of kilometres.

You would know one if you saw it - just a huge rock sticking up in an odd place. Bill liked to call them 'erotic boulders', but there isn't anything sexy about them. And so I took no photos.

Yes, my dear husband, being his usual erratic self.

Perhaps the craft shop would improve their business with that subtle name change (though I did my best there to contribute to the local economy before we left). 

The art nouveau style window caught my eye.

I photographed this building because I thought it very handsome, no improvements necessary. Bill thought the owner might be a bit confused, the pub being called Patrick Johnny Sally, but no doubt it all makes perfect sense to an Irishman.

Smoke from a peat fire.

We wandered in one evening after dinner and discovered a great place to photograph sunsets, from the balcony at the back. We met some people from Dublin back visiting their home town and that was where I learned how to pronounce their name: not Gallagrrr, GallaHER. Clearly I just think I know how to pronounce words...

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