A few years ago I had the joy of seeing The Cripple on Inishmaan on Broadway. It was amazing! Seeing Daniel Radcliffe live was super cool, but I’m not going to lie, the women in the show were the real powerhouses.
When I realized the island in the show was a real place, I knew I had to go there. Getting to Inishmaan jumped right on the list of our Ireland to-dos.
Then we realized that staying on Inishmaan is actually really hard and opted for sailing past Inishmaan and staying on the neighboring, slightly larger island with accommodations you don’t have to book a year in advance: Inishmoore.
Inishmoore did not disappoint.
Our psychotic innkeeper’s husband was giving us a lecture on why people in Ireland hate Donald Trump (spoilers, it has to do with an insulted golf course) and we almost missed the ferry. They waited for us. They actually told us not to run, everything was going to be okay, and waited for us.
Dorothy, we’re not in America anymore.
The boat ride out to the island was freezing but fantastic.
Inishmoore is a tiny island where most people speak Gaelic and almost everyone is living in an ancestral home. Even the land for the animals has been broken up over centuries. The islanders are master stone masons, all because they had to learn to build and maintain the walls that keep in their animals.
There used to be a Protestant church on the island, but after the Protestants left, the place was abandoned to cave in.
That’s right. Nary a Protestant in residence.
The locals strolled into the restaurants’ kitchens, chatting in Gaelic. The ocean breeze reached you wherever you were. And the bike ride almost killed my butt.
Add that to buying the best sweater I’ve ever owned and spending an evening throttling my husband at chess in front of a coal fire, and you have a recipe for Irish magic.
I honestly didn’t think Ireland could get any better. And then we went to Galway. After finding a giant unisex toilet.