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Windy Islands, part 1

After a couple of months spent home when I went back from my Up North and Down South trips, it was time to start over again. As usually - why should it be easy, when it can be tough - North for the winter! Let's see where Windy islands tour will lead us... 😎😆
You can also fallow the trip in Polarsteps.
Not to overload the post with pictures, most of the photos you can find at the end of it divided into galleries.

19 November 2022 – Lyaskovets, Bulgaria

After the double than expected pause, it’s time to start the next adventure – the Windy islands tour.

Leaving home once again, to start my Windy islands tour.
Leaving home once again, to start my Windy islands tour.

26 November 2022 – Sofia, Bulgaria

First stop – Sofia.

A necessary visit to my favourite therapist to take care of my humble personality for last time before the following months of obscurity.

My best friend, who is always there when I need him! Well, maybe not overexcited though... 🤣😝
My best friend, who is always there when I need him! Well, maybe not overexcited though… 🤣😝

And of course, my beloved friends, who must send me off before the departure. (Mainly because they had to have me staying with them before that! 🤣)

One amazing friend I have, who is always having my back!
One amazing friend I have, who is always having my back!

Thank you, guys! I love you! 🤗🤗🤗

26 November 2022 – Manchester, UK – the first of the Windy islands

Roberto’s first flight ended on English soil.

Tightly wrapped in foil by one of my friends, he appeared at the overseas baggage strip safe and sound. Although last in line looking somewhat unkempt and abandoned, he was safe and secure!

Arriving at Manchester airport - poor Roberto is still out there on the little wagon.
Arriving at Manchester airport – poor Roberto is still out there on the little wagon. One of the Windy islands.

After a quick operation with the manicure scissors, he was freed from the cocoon and tossed on my back as usual. Only this time he has a little sister… 🙈🙉🙊

Roberto and his little sister patiently waiting for the buss to Leeds
Roberto and his little sister patiently waiting for the buss to Leeds

27 November 2022 – Leeds, UK

The reason I chose UK was because I didn’t choose it! 😆

It was definitely not on my list of destinations for the winter, especially given that I can’t work there legally. Still, I had promised my sister, being free and going back and forth, to look after my nephews for a week.

Not so bad to be a babysitter on your own nephews, isn't it! 😉
Not so bad to be a babysitter on your own nephews, isn’t it! 😉

Why not, I thought, I’ll find some work anyway. Even if it’s not there, flights from England are much more affordable than in Bulgaria.

Walking the kids to school? Nah, kids walking their aunt to school. 😆
Walking the kids to school? Nah, kids walking their aunt to school. 😆

I suspect that somehow my inner mind-set had been felt and Leeds greeted me with a week of abundant fog… 🙄

2 December 2022 – Tunstall, UK

After my sister returned from her vacation, she made sure to take me on vacation too! Thanks, sis! I’d hardly had another opportunity to enjoy the windy and wet beauty of the English coast.

Beautiful windy walk at the UK East coast
Beautiful windy walk at the UK East coast

We had a peaceful and cosy weekend enjoying the squawking of the seagulls and the sound of the crashing waves. Thank you! I love you (sometimes)!! 😜🤗🥰

Beautiful windy walk at the UK East coast
Beautiful windy walk at the UK East coast

6 December 2022 – Dublin airport, Ireland – the second of the Windy islands

In the meantime, I kept looking for an option and a direction to go to next. Only, it had been a month with no results at all and I finally I made an arrangement for a job in London. Thanks to a good old friend from my London period 12 years ago. 🤗

I didn’t want to go there. Yet, it was the only option I have at the moment… And was grateful to have it at all!

Manchester airport again, this time towards Dublin, Ireland
Manchester airport again, this time towards Dublin, Ireland

However, just a day before I head towards London, a lady had texted me with an offer for Ireland. From Workaway community. It was a position with no payment, just accommodation and food, but it was good as a start!

Roberto and his little sister at the Dublin airport. Waiting for me to find out where the hell, should we find a buss towards Nenagh...
Roberto and his little sister at the Dublin airport. Waiting for me to find out where the hell, should we find a buss towards Nenagh…

I let the path to lead me and have promised to follow it, so – hang on, Ireland, I’m coming! 😝 Anyway, as a priority, after Norway and Scotland, was Ireland. But I’d go to Zanzibar, too, if I was led to… 🤪

On the front seat as a VIP on the buss towards Nenagh, Ireland
On the front seat as a VIP on the buss towards Nenagh, Ireland – anther of the Windy islands

At the airport it was quite a big wait and hang around. No distinct bus information, no help desc, no staff to ask – I had to ask random people, most of whom, are either in my situation or just have some idea, but…

Passing through Dublin on the way to Nenagh
Passing through Dublin on the way to Nenagh

Well, I eventually found what I was looking for. After about 2 hours of wandering around and asking people. Good that I had 4 hours between landing and the bus… 🤦🏻

6 December 2022 – Burgesbeg, Ireland

The journey from the airport to Nenagh was unexpectedly pleasant and interesting. Passing through Dublin, I asked the driver if I could sit on the seat behind him to take some photos and videos, at which point he pointed out the folding seat next to him and became my private and wonderful tour guide for the rest of the journey. 😁

COLD and beautiful sunrise in the rural Ireland
COLD and beautiful sunrise in the rural Ireland

Siobhan met me at Nenagh and we headed to her outhouse – an old renovated farmhouse – spacious and cozy.

The beautiful house I had the chance to live in at my first Workaway experience
The beautiful house I had the chance to live in at my first Workaway experience

Siobhan works as a holistic therapist and yoga teacher, and I was supposed to help her with the housekeeping as well as working with herbs and potions, which I found rather interesting.

COLD and beautiful sunrise in the rural Ireland
COLD and beautiful sunrise in the rural Ireland

Well, the reality turned out to be a bit different and my interest cooled down a bit. Everything was kind of chaotic, no plan, no organisation, waiting for hours for her to decide what she was going to do (and therefore I) and wasting time dumbly hanging around.

There are no random things, though…

The first morning walk with the dog around the neighbourhood
The first morning walk with the dog around the neighbourhood

The lack of organisation and sorted priorities is driving me crazy (even though I travel without a plan, my trip is actually very organised, precisely because I need to be flexible and ready to react at any moment)!

I suspect Siobhan is just teaching me a lesson, so I’m trying to take it in as I look around for the next turn the road has prepared for me. 🤔

Getting ready for Christmas
Getting ready for Christmas

I must say though, it was just the first two days while we get to know each other and our habits. She was just too busy and couldn’t get organised well enough, where the issue came from.

Afterwards we got along pretty well and I was actually sorry when came the time to leave. Which was another unexpected and a bit odd plan change, but later for that…

COLD and beautiful sunrise in the rural Ireland
COLD and beautiful sunrise in the rural Ireland

It’s cold. Very cold. And it’s beautiful. Even more beautiful. 🥰🥶💨🥰

But the house is warm. The wood-burning stove powers the radiators, and the almost metre-thick walls keep the heat inside for a long time.

Forest usually occupies the most precios place in the house
Forest usually occupies the most precios place in the house

10 December 2022 – Nenagh, Ireland

The farm is remote without any settlements or transport, so my only option is to go out with Siobhan when she leaves for work and come home with her.

Up high at the Nenagh's castle tower
Up high at the Nenagh’s castle tower

Which I do. 😉

I walk around Nenagh for a few hours, finding a second hand shop in the meantime to buy some warm pants. I also climb the tower (entrance free of course) to see the town from above, while wondering how the soldiers in ancient times climbed up with armor and weapons, as I was struggling with a backpack and a camera and barely made my way up the narrow steep stairs. 🤔🤦🏻‍♀️

The Nenagh's castle tower
The Nenagh’s castle tower

I ended up having another hour to wait before Siobhan finished work and we can head back. Soooo, this was the moment I’ve been waiting for – the tour ended in an Irish pub over a cup of Irish coffee!

Waiting for my Irish coffee in an Irish pub! 🤪
Waiting for my Irish coffee in an Irish pub! 🤪

Oh yeah! After the first sip, I felt the heat running through my veins! It was definitely not too much coffee inside… 😜🥃☕😁


17 December 2022 – Lough Derg, Ireland – Windy islands tour

The cold beauty of Lough Derg, Ireland
The cold beauty of Lough Derg, Ireland

A nice leisurely walk by the Lough Derg lakeside and a cup of aromatic coffee in the nearby town – Killaloe. It was cold, we were all skating (including the dog) on the frozen ground, but so peaceful and beautiful.

At Lough Derg - peaceful, cold and beautiful
At Lough Derg – peaceful, cold and beautiful

I don’t know, I didn’t get to see much of Ireland (plans change on the go and I don’t usually get asked for my opinion 🤣) but from the little I did get a chance to see and feel, I know I’ll be back again one day.

The cold beauty of Lough Derg, Ireland
The cold beauty of Lough Derg, Ireland

Preferably not in the winter… 😂🥶😝

In the meanwhile, I got another offer from Workaway and this time for paid work. And in Scotland! Do you think I had to think twice?! And they wanted me ASAP. Yet, having some past experience with the Scottish loyalty, I was a bit cautious and waited everything to be confirmed, the address, details, etc… and a few days extra.

At Lough Derg - peaceful, cold and beautiful
At Lough Derg – peaceful, cold and beautiful

Then I arranged with Siobhan to leave earlier than planed (I need a paid position and she understand that), arranged to stay with a friend in Edinburgh for a few days to have a look around and bought my ticket to Scotland. Just to receive a message a few hours latter, that the Scots have changed their mind… 🙄🤦🏻‍♀️

The way you should NOT deal with people!
The way you should NOT deal with people!

What’s wrong with those people, I keep wondering?!? They have just left me hanging in the air with a ticket to nowhere and with no place to go to… Yeah, there is something definitely wrong here… 🤔

The church in Killaloe, Ireland
The church in Killaloe, Ireland

Anyway, I should be fine, as always! Yet, it’s not the way you treat people! Not at all!!!

But I am still going to Scotland – I’ve already got a ticket anyway and have some Windy islands to explore! 😉


GALERIES

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