A Fairy Trail

On Friday,  I bundled Lile and Sábha into the car, and hit the road to undertake a four-hour, just us girls, car journey to West Cork to visit friends. We made it unscathed and relatively sane, with only a 10-minute break, thanks to the revelation that was - attaching a portable DVD player, using a bungee cord, to the back of the passenger headrest. We also had a wire attached to the cigarette lighter thingy for power and yet another wire attached to the car stereo for sound. We're high-tech like that, you know...

The girls were so thrilled by the very idea of in-car entertainment that it kept them occupied almost all the way. I, on the other hand, had to suffer listening to squeaky cartoon noise-hell for four hours there... and four hours back... yeah... best idea EVERRRRRR...
So we made it, to the wonderful wilderness of West Cork and the wonderful welcomes of my friend Susan and her adorable littles, Stella and Jake.
The kids were instant best friends and we all had a great time playing in the garden, visiting the puppies in the animal sanctuary next door and discovering teeny, tiny pieces of a place we will definitely return to.

On Saturday afternoon we visited one of the most magical places I've ever seen. A tiny forest perched on a jutting headland, on the edge of an inlet, where the sea crept in and pretended to be a, soft, aquamarine blue, lake.
We followed a winding path which led us to the first treat - a tumbledown castle to explore... but that was only the beginning...
Stella spotted the first one....
The first of the fairy front-doors, hidden at the base of a tree.... and suddenly another appeared... and another and another... I'm not sure how many we spotted... and it's possible we missed some... but there were lots, each one completely unique and absolutely beautiful.


There are some seriously house-proud fairies in West Cork!! Visitors to their realm offer gifts as they pass through and the woods are littered with coins and shells and buttons and beads and all kinds of things a house-proud fairy might consider attractive. 
The girls were enthralled and delighted. They shouted and called and sang to each other all through the woods -"Look! Another one - let's knock and see if they're home!!" Lile parked some fairy cars. Sábha swept some fairy front porches. Stella, the local fairy expert, lead the way.

It was amazing. If you ever find yourself in West Cork I urge you to visit. Bring something pretty to leave as a gift (we gave buttons and gorse flowers) and enjoy the magic. It is an "unofficial" fairy trail, and I can't seem to find much about it online... I imagine the fairies prefer it that way... but I'll leave you with a clue...

3 comments

  1. what an incredible place! i will probably not casually find myself in west cork...so we'll just have to plan it into our itinerary when we (someday, yes someday!) do our family trip to ireland. i am so blown away and delighted! we truly are on similar paths right now, dear sadhbh.

    thank you for sharing your insight and personal process around paddy's day. sometimes i wonder how it is that more folks don't know...but isn't it like that with all our holidays? we blindly celebrate without really understanding. and what a pity about the drunkeness that happens in ireland...i thought the stupidity with green beer and brawliing was just typical american misinterpretation.

    glad to know i have a kindred spirit whose littles know about faeries too. xo

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  2. Thank you for your sweet comment Mary. Yes, you will have to come to Ireland, I'll show you around and when we do our family to the States - you can show us your magical places!I think our girls would get on famously xx

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  3. so amazing! and the girls' reactions are priceless.

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