Return to Galway

Trip Start Sep 06, 2004
Trip End Nov 23, 2004

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Thursday, September 30, 2004

I bestowed my birthday flowers on the old lady who helps her daughter run the B&B. (It's a family affair, with the preteen children helping out too.) She was tickled pink. I felt bad letting them go, but her pleasure was worth it. Then I caught the ferry back--another rough ride. (If you're prone to seasickness, take the airplane!) On the boat and on the bus back to Galway, I wrote.

From my diary:

"Here I am on my way back from Inishmore, having NOT written and written and written. I didn't feel like staying there in the damp any longer, trying to avoid the tourists (and mostly succeeding). I did get a good long tramp and an ancient fort almost to myself one day, and a good long bike ride and another ancient fort (not to myself) another day. But the writing wasn't there. I should have known--the activities were too intense to allow for writing. Not that that's bad--I experienced as much of the island as I could while I was there. Processing can come later and usually does.

I feel curiously empty. Going back to Galway... I'm not feeling bold enough to go off to Kerry, or so I said via texting to Carla and Kat last night. What's the truth? It feels like too much work. Too scary. I've been brave enough coming over here. I don't want to live with all those tourists. (In Galway they seem to fade into the surroundings a bit, and the souvenir shops aren't everywhere. Barely more than Edmonton, in fact, with its postcards in greeting card shops.) 10,000 people in Killarney, and doubtless no jobs. Yet I feel betrayal, that I've come so far and can't go just that small step farther. What If? All you need is one job. I'm afraid of being tied down in Galway--I know I'll buy clothes as soon as I have a flat (and a job, hopefully). I won't be able to move as easily. Already I'm carrying an extra bag--albeit mostly fully of food, and books borrowed from Kinlay Hostel.

I told my friends I was coming back. But I haven't booked the hostel.

Fear is in there someplace. If I'm not going to Killarney, I have to get a job at once. Any job. And a flat--which I'll be doing after the beginning of the month.

Why is County Kerry the Holy Grail? What if I go and don't like it? I've been homeless, jobless, rootless for a month now. I'm out of time. It's tearing at me. The ferry is nearing the mainland dock--I have to know!

In Killarney (or Dingle) I'd be alone. No support system. How long could I handle that?

Galway is short on greenery, but long on craic (Irish word for having a good time) and music. I don't know what Killarney is like. Kathleen at USIT said touristy. If it's anything like Banff...yuck, but what surroundings!

You're not stuck in Galway. Start there. Visit Killarney etc. later. Look for work then if you want. You just need a home for a while.


When the bus arrived in Galway, I sat on the steps of the hostel, trying to decide what to do. One of the hostel desk guys happened by on his smoke break and said Killarney is nice but small; Galway is great. Eventually I heaved myself up and went to check in again. I'm back in the 6-bed room, but there are only 4 of us and 3 are Canadian Swapper girls, fast becoming friends. I picked up the Advertiser right away, and discovered that in addition to the classifieds they also have a Careers section--with lots of receptionist jobs. So I have lots to do tomorrow. On the weekend I am going to write (really, this time) and catch up on my travelogue (hopefully the internet at the hostel will be working again--it was out when I left and is still out) and see about attending to my photos (e-mailing and uploading). Monday I'll do follow-ups on those jobs and pound the pavement around the university and in the city centre. Tuesday I'll go to temp agencies and check online (if I haven't already). Wednesday I'll find a place to live, whether I have a job or not. Thursday, I'll keep apartment-hunting if necessary and start pursuing jobs in that week's Advertiser. The following week, if no jobs have turned up, I'll go for a bottom-of-the-barrel one. By hook or by crook, I'll have a job and a home at last! (And try not to think about how long it took.)
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