The Retirees go Abroad – France, Norway, UK and Ireland – Belfast to Galway

Life and this holiday go on. Up and off to Galway – 5 hours driving from East to West – but we had to take a different route. We were looking for the Marble Arch Caves just south of Enniskillen in county Fermanagh (it is precisely on the border between Eire and the United Kingdom England Wales Scotland and Northern Ireland – I know because they accepted Euros and Sterling. It was closed for winter. Still marvellous drive to get there and see the place.

Then we just set sail for Galway arriving around 3.00pm. Fabulous B&B just down the road from Salt Hill where my great grandmother on Mum’s side held the lease on one hotel and eleven houses. We had a postcard from 1909 showing the Main Street of Salt Hill and we set off to find out what it looked like today. Our host was very excited and gave us a good start.

When we walked up to the street we were quickly able to identify two hotels from the postcard. We went into Lonergans Hotel. The Barmaid was amazed but confirmed this was one of the buildings in our postcard. We had a pint and a chat with the locals and then went into the Eglinton hotel. It is no longer a hotel but a refugee hostel. Even so the staff were excited to see the post card and gave us some information that Killorans Hotel next door to Lonergans had old pictures of the area.

We then went to Killorans (also shown in the postcard) and spoke to the barman who pointed to a photo on his wall and there was the identical scene only in black and white hanging on the wall but they had no idea of the date. We saw later photos showing how much land has been reclaimed to create a new fore shore and other changes. Another pint.

Feeling we had solved the mystery we headed for Galway to have dinner and ended up in Anton’s cafe (picture to follow). Now we are back at the B&B planning tomorrow.

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Retired Australian Lawyer having worked representing the innocent and the not so innocent in Australia and some of the remote parts of the world and having travelled widely through Europe, Western Russia, Canada, USA, New Zealand, Thailand Malaysia Solomon Islands northern China, Hong Kong and the UAE So now that I have the time I am writing about my travels present and past. Hope you enjoy exploring off the beaten track.