Off we went to Galway with Joe and van packed and me feeling nervous about the poetry reading I was about to do and trying not to think about the fact that the Over the Edge Writer of the Year comp results were to be announced afterwards. I'd been shortlisted but wished I didn't have to be there. The reading was ok I think. I didn't stumble or trip up anyway, and it was lovely to have the opportunity to read ten poems to such an audience - very supportive and keen to listen. After the readings and before the open mic competition judge James Martyn was called up to give the results. And, well, I won the poetry section with a poem called 'Pandora's Well'. Astonished and delighted.
|The old mill at Clondra|
Needless to say my head wasn't great the next morning, but off we went to Clondra in Co Longford. This is a tiny village surrounded by water - three rivers and the Royal Canal. It's fifty years since boats could pass from the Royal Canal onto the Shannon. The canal was closed in 1961 when the railways and roads took commercial traffic off the waterways. Low bridges and culverts were built making it impossible for boats to navigate its length, but at least it was never filled in. In 1974 the Royal Canal Amenity Group was formed to try to restore the canal. Their job is finally done.
|Richmond Harbour during the opening|
Purple Onion restaurant in Tarmonbarry just down the road. We'd looked in there once before and decided it was a bit pricey. We had dinner there on Saturday night - it's a pub and art gallery. Great food, great ambience, great service. And not at all coloured by the fact that we only had to pay €11.