The Flaggy Shore

I visited the Flaggy Shore last week with my Irish Studies course. It is a little further up Galway Bay and is a good example of the burren going down into the ocean. My favorite traditional Irish restaurant Linane's is there, but unfortunately this time I couldn't stop and eat.

I've been learning about how the burren was formed. The limestone was once the bottom of an ocean and is covered with fossils. Which I somehow had never recognized even though they are all over the pavement. Then the ocean went away and the bottom became land and was covered with dirt. Then came the last Ice Age and glaciers scoured the dirt off the limestone, which has never really been covered up since. Leaving this surface of the moon-like landscape.

That is my geology lesson for you. I think it is understandable why I chose art over science.

Fossils in the pavement:

Striae on the pavement which show the direction in which the glacier receded.

Very peaceful cows. They are on a disused walking path and have no reaction at all besides mild curiosity to people being near. Most cows start a bit or freeze and stare.

Pretty yellow thistles:
That's algae. They live in shallow bowls on the rocks. Which they make because they eat the limestone. I had always thought it was moss and that the scoops where from erosion.

Pretty fields on the walk:

Eileen, one of the new MFA's on top of the martello tower. Martello towers are scattered along the Irish coast. Wellington had them built because he feared that Napoleon would land in Ireland and attack England from the west (and pick up some new troops among the Irish).

Some of the students climbed in using the rope ladders. You climb up to this hole, climb down to the center, climb up to another hole on the inside, then go up the stairs to the top. We ran out of time so I couldn't go up, but some of the other grad students want to go so I'll go then.
This old farmer came by on his tractor and seemed to think it was hilarious watching all the girls go up so he sat there and just watched and watched.

Just a small part of a very strange shrine on the walk back to the bus:

Look at the feet of the nearest cow. The farmer was herding them down the road riding his bike and waving a stick at the cows

Cows eating hydrangeas and staring at me:

Geese and old tree trunks in a hay baling yard:

I can't remember the name of the family who owned this great house. But during the war of independence it was a garrison for the black and tans. So it was torched.

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