Thursday, March 3, 2011

Spring has sprung - Road Art Spotted around Co. Waterford

Golden Harvest by Colm Brennan - Kilmac bypass, N25
Today was one of those glorious spring days that started off with a sharp hoar frost whitening everything and a dense fog that  took a few hours to clear and led to a few pile-ups on the motorways up the country. No-one hurt but lots of inconvenienced motorists and closed lanes. The sun shone through around mid-morning and some things just begged to be photographed - like this shot of the sun glistening on the sea off Helvick Head in Ring, and the view from Helvick across to Mine Head.

Golden Harvest, N25 on Kilmacthomas Bypass

Falla na Sioga by Alan Counihan, Windgap,Dungarvan-N25
 I feel really lucky to work in a job that involves driving around the beautiful scenic south coast of Co. Waterford, and quickly forget the days of winter ice and snow and dark dense fog that never clears and totally disorientates even the most seasoned drivers, particularly around Old Parish, which is an upland area near the coast that often seems to be the only foggy part of the county!
Falla na Sioga detail-Alan Counihan,Windgap,Dungarvan-N25

Falla na Sioga (Fairy's Wall) Alan Counihan,N25 Windgap
 The election posters are nearly all gone- tomorrow's the deadline after which there'll be hell (and fines) to pay, so every candidate's making trojan efforts to get rid of them. I took this last billboard standing of Ciara and Eamon Gilmore today near Ring Cross on the N25, with nicely bilingual Thank You stickers attached.
Falla na Sioga by Alan Counihan, Windgap,Dungarvan-N25
Falla na Sioga -detail of inscription-Windgap,Dungarvan-N25

Last Billboard Standing in West Waterford! N25 Ring Cross
Sun over Atlantic Ocean from Helvick Head today
Then this evening I was checking my phone in a lay-by near The Sweep on the same N25 up near Windgap, when I thought to photograph this piece of road art in the lay-by. The funny thing is that the gap in the wall is art which I erroneously attributed to a botched County Council repair job, until I realised it had a name - Falla na Síoga (Wall of the Fairies) and an inscription - and what's even more bizarre, I'd met the sculptor (Alan Counihan) and his partner Gypsy Ray (to whom it's dedicated) a number of years ago in Lismore at travel writer Dervla Murphy's house. He is also an actor who played in a stage production of Yasmina Reza's The Unexpected Man in Lismore some years ago, which I really enjoyed. On the Co.Council's website photo they only show the doughnut and not the inscribed wall.

There's a fascinating piece of well-known road art on the N25 at the Kilmacthomas Bypass - Golden Harvest by Colm Brennan - which represents sheaves of waving corn. It's a lovely prominent piece of sculpture which always gladdens my heart on the road to Waterford - especially if it's for some interminable meeting.
Panoramic vista from Helvick Head to Mine Head today
So I hope you like the first days of spring which seems to have sprung in West Waterford- we can live with the cold frosty nights as long as the days are warm and sunny - and nothing like the stretch in the evenings with the setting sun blinding me on the drive home every evening. Another three weeks or so and the clocks go forward. "Spring Forward, Fall Back" is my mnemonic for Daylight Saving - I hate it when the clocks go back in October and love it when they go forward in March - even if I lose an hour's sleep!


Ann said...

Ok now Catherine that was cruel. I am feeling very very homesick after viewing those photos of old stomping grounds! We are still getting snow here. How I miss the March daffodils! Still the stretch in the evenings is noticeable here too.

Stephanie V said...

Love the 'Golden Harvest' graceful. I think I'd drive out of my way just to see it more often.

And hurrah! for the lengthening light each day. Even the rainy days aren't so dreary when you can eat your supper without turning on every light.

Catherine said...

Ann - sorry for the cruelty - I rather hoped I'd be giving you a little nostalgia trip! The nights here are still very frosty and cold, but the days are sunny and bright cloudless skies. Inspiring for the photos!

Stephanie V - Yes, Golden Harvest is beautiful, you really have to make the effort to stop safely on the fast roadway to enjoy it - usually I'm whizzing by late for a meeting in Waterford! And yes, the longer evenings are a joy to behold!

Thanks for stopping by! Catherine xxxx

Laura said...

Thank you for stopping by the cottage Catherine! Do let me know how your sourdough bread turns out. It is much easier than some may let on. I am certain you will love it!

Your photos are wonderful and as I am always missing Ireland, to see photos of familiar areas brings me joy.

A happy Saturday to you,

Pooch Purple Reign said...

my visit to ireland was not nearly long enough. we did go thru co.waterford i believe... on the bus to cork. thanks for the tour!
have a good week ahead

Peggy said...

Hi Catherine, I have not done a lot of driving around Waterford so I have not seen the Golden harvest which looks fantastic. I love to see all of these road side scultures in the different counties.

Anonymous said...

I like the Golden Harvest, it's lovely. I failed with Skippy Dies. I read about 60 pages and gave up.
You probably blinked during Off the Rails, it was a very short clip of me (just as well!)