Saturday, April 27, 2013

The rain, the Christ the King statue, a walk through Killarney & other things

The shops on Main Street are closed up tight with iron shutters. The entranceways are waiting anxiously to be swept out. There are no sales racks with postcards and half-priced books and sun-faded clothing. The merchants have no coin.

I walk to Kenmare Place and sit on the stone wall, and study the old jarveys with their stretched-out sweaters and their pants with tattered cuffs. They are feeding and brushing their horses, preparing for a day of riding their jaunting cars through the bumpy paths of Killarney National Park.

Nearby, the statue of Christ the King studies me. He is looking quite dapper among the smell of horse manure and man sweat. Beyond Christ lies the Killarney House Gardens: the beech, lime, and walnut trees standing tall and thick; the fading rhododendrons, roses and azaleas, which are bushed after blooming so heavily in the spring; the arched cherry drive where the ugly lovers walk together.

In the distance, clouds are festering in MacGillycuddy's Reeks. The breeze does not hint at rain, but these incoming dark clouds certainly do. Killarney has done nothing but perspire the six days I have been here—I hope the rain will hold off. I have observed the good folks here while precipitation falls and it doesn't irk them. They merely hold a hand out, catch a raindrop, rub it between their palms, and say, "'Tis a soft auld day." Soft, and bothersome.

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