Things on the horizon you’d hope never to see

Let’s put it this way, Tommy said, “A set of sails off the coast coming towards the shore was never a welcome sight. No one wanted 300 men from any country landing here.”

Sea invasions, piracy, smuggling, coffin ships bound for America — all sorts of sails on the horizon tell a story of what life in the west of Ireland once demanded.

Here’s the piece of sea cliff I can see from a distance out my window at The Stella Maris. Once I’ve been fully caffeinated we’re off to investigate it more closely. Walking the cliffs might give me some insight into my own ancestry. Dad sent a text last night that said so.

Look out into the sea from Downpatrick Head, that’s where your shipwrecked ancestor arrived in 1588 from the Great Armada with ‘snow on his head’ which is how the natives referred to the white plume in a 16th century Spanish marine officer’s helmet!

I can’t see how we’re related since I can’t stand wearing hats, but I shan’t let that get in the way of a good story. More later as I go to see a man about a grave before making my way back to London.

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