north west ireland

We have made it to Ireland!
We finally arrived about 3 weeks ago after a lot of stress with the solicitor and having to spend nearly another 3 weeks either camping or sleeping on my mum’s sofa. This was made even more complicated with 4 dogs and 6 tortoises!

It has been a crazy fun few weeks here in Ireland. Renovations inside the house started as soon as we got here as there was literally nothing but walls in the bathroom and nearly all of the floors are rotten. Matt has put new floor joists and boards in the spare room and the bathroom and has installed a working toilet!
The dogs settled in to their new home right away and are very happy.

Tales from Ireland - The Dobhar Chu

Although Irish folklore is littered with legendary ghoulish water creatures, few are as scary as the Dobhar Chu (pronounced do-war coo). Considered by some to be Ireland’s version of the famous Loch Ness monster, the Dobhar Chu is a mythical lake monster that has inhabited the lakes of the British Isles since ancient times. The name, roughly translated means ‘water hound’, or ‘hound of the deep’. Thought to be a cross between a giant otter and a hound, the Dobhar Chu is about seven foot long, or about the size of a crocodile. In fact it is also known as the Irish Crocodile.

The Dobhar Chu is a blood-thirsty, gruesome creature that lives deep in the waters of a lake, river or even the sea and is known to be able to travel great distances in water or on land. This monster hound is known for its speed, aggression and appetite for human flesh. There are usually two of these creatures, and when one is killed, its mate will swim up from the depths of the water and avenge the killing by pursuing its attacker, killing him and often eating him. This happens because, when the Dobhar Chu is about to die, it gives off an eerie high-pitched whistle to warn its mate.

Like the legendary Bigfoot, and many other creatures, the Dobhar Chu is known as a cryptid, a term which refers to a creature, or plant whose existence is unrecognized by scientific consensus and is usually regarded as highly unlikely. Yet in Glenade, County Leitrim, in north-west Ireland there is evidence to suggest its existence. Reports of sightings of the Dobhar Chu date back as far as 1684. One was recorded by Miss Walkington in the 1896 edition of The Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland. Miss Walkington described it as being ‘half-wolfdog and half-fish’. A few months afterward Mr. H. Chicester Hart responded to Miss Walkington’s letter. He said that he heard rumors about a gruesome creature called the Dobhar Chu which is said to be king of all lakes and father of all otters.

The creature is believed to live in many lakes around Ireland. Sraheens Lough, Achill Island, in County Mayo is where the largest number of, as yet, unsubstantiated modern sightings in Ireland have been. Apparently, a small population of Dobhar Chu live in Sraheens Lough, though it is believed that they are migratory, not living in the lake all the year. As recently as 2000, Irish artist Sean Corcoran and his wife claimed to have witnessed a sighting of a Dobhar Chu in a lake on Omey Island in Connemara, County Galway. Corcoran describes it as large, dark and with orange flippers. “The creature,” reports Corcoran, “swam the width of the lake from west to east in what seemed like a matter of a few seconds.” Corcoran concludes that it finally leapt onto a huge boulder, and before disappearing gave “the most haunting screech”.

More frightening than the Selkies (seals who can take the form of humans), or the famous Kelpies (mythical water horses said to inhabit the rivers and lakes of Scotland and Ireland), the Dobhar Chu is considered to be an immature form of the famous Lough Ness monster, affectionately known as Nessie. There is also a further interesting link between Ireland and these two monsters which continues to this day. The link begins with the first sighting of the Loch Ness monster in Scotland in the seventh century by the Irish missionary St. Columba (see box at bottom of page). Columba was also the first to challenge and overcome the Loch Ness monster; by using his spiritual powers Columba miraculously saved a man from being devoured by the monster. This story leads to another myth that Nessie’s offspring came to the lakes of Ireland to avenge St. Columba’s actions.

Lest you think that the Dobhar Chu is just another imaginary fable, be aware that there is some evidence to suggest it may be real. What is more, another theory suggests that this creature travels extensively. Some researchers for example, connect the famous lake monster Bessie which is said to inhabit Lake Erie in the US with the Irish Dobhar Chu. There have been several sightings of this large serpentine monster which followed Irish emigrants to the heartland of America. An unconfirmed sighting of Bessie describes a terrifying encounter with a huge lake creature that killed three people in 1992. A more elusive but similar, sinister creature has apparently been attacking swimmers in Pump House beach near Port Dover in Canada since August 2001. Other reports document that these creatures inhabit various scattered locations all over New England and as well as all the Great Lakes region.

However, of all the sightings of the Dobhar Chu, it is the account in Glenade, County Leitrim of 1722 of the bestial murder of Grace McGloighlin that is the most famous. Oral tradition in this part of Ireland still holds that the story of The Dobhar Chu of Glenade is true. This is the story as related by local storyteller Owen McGowan of the townland of Ahanlish, Kinlough, Co. Leitrim.

Grace McGloighlin, known as Grace or Gráinne Connolly (the custom at the time was that a woman retains her maiden name after marriage), lived in the town land of Creevelea which is close to the border of Leitrim and Sligo, and on the northwestern part of Glenade Lake. On September 22nd 1722, Grace came down to the lake to bathe and perhaps wash some clothes. While she was doing this a huge monster emerged from the water and savagely attacked, then killed Grace. She was later found by her husband Terence. Terence saw her bloodied body on the side of the lake and to his horror saw the huge beast which had killed his wife lying asleep across her dead body. Heart-broken with grief and furious, Terence knew at once that it was a Dobhar Chu.

Terence immediately found his dagger and killed the monster. However, as is usual with this kind of creature, during its death throes it let out a high-pitched whistle which alerted its mate to what was happening. A second Dobhar Chu emerged at once from the depths of the lake. Terrified, Terence took to his heels and jumping on a horse began to ride for his life as the second Dobhar Chu pursued him. Terence rode for many miles, with the Dobhar Chu close behind him. A local man, Patrick Doherty (now deceased), told historian and folklorist Joe McGowan the story of the chase. It started at Frank McSharry’s of Glenade, faltered and ended close by Cashelgarron stone fort in Co. Sligo at a blacksmith’s forge.

After being chased for miles Terence was obliged to stop to have his horse’s foot re-shod. The blacksmith at Cashelgarron, a wise man, knew the ways of this creature. He gave Terence a sword and told him: “When the creature charges, he’ll put his head right through the horse. As soon as he does this, you be quick and cut his head off.” Terence, still on his horse stood his ground near the forge. The huge beast came at full charge then it put its head right through the horse, as predicted by the blacksmith. This time, however, Terence was ready. Determined to avenge his wife’s murder Terence put his sword through the Dobhar Chu’s head, killing it instantly.

There is further ghoulish detail to back up the story. The grave of Grace Connolly actually exists. What’s more, carved on her tombstone is a detailed depiction of her killer, the Dobhar Chu. It is located in Conwall cemetery in the townland of Drummans. Drummans near the village of Kinlough is part of the approach to the Valley of Glenade. The tomb itself is so old that most of the written details are illegible. However, Grace’s name and that of her husband can be made out. The carved image of the Dobhar Chu is much clearer. The creature is depicted lying down with its head and neck flung backwards so that it lies flat along its back in its death throes. A spear-like weapon is shown piercing the base of the creature’s neck, reemerging below its body, and gripped by a human fist at its upper end. Also and less well known, both the Dobhar Chu and McGloighlin’s horse are buried in Co. Sligo, not far from Cashelgarron stone fort where they were both killed.

anonymous asked:

Is there some significance as to why Diana so often uses Co. Sligo when she deals with Irish characters? Bonnet, Jeffries and the entire plot of Scottish Prisoner, all tied on Sligo. It's not a criticism, just curious as to what drew her to that county rather than any of the other 31. Is it Yeats maybe? She quoted The Lake Isle of Inishfree twice in the books.

I have no clue. The Yeats tie might be and as you mentioned she does reference Innisfree. I did a quick read about Sligo and it sounds like for the time period that was where most Irish emigrants came from. This is from this site here

If anyone else knows, please feel to share your thoughts and knowledge.

County Sligo is an area of stunning beauty situated on the North West coast of Ireland in the province of Connacht. Like many other Irish counties, it has suffered greatly from emigration over the last two centuries. According to the Census returns, a staggering 75,660 emigrated from Sligo in the half-century from 1851-1901.

Prior to 1855, most of those emigrating from the port of Sligo took their passage directly to North America, usually to New York, Boston, Quebec and St. Johns.

Since the 1850’s, the majority of the emigrants took the coastal steamers to Glasgow or Liverpool from whence most of them crossed the Atlantic in purpose built steamers.

This emigration has created a Sligo Diaspora worldwide who can trace their ‘roots’ to County Sligo.

anonymous asked:

Omg yeah Ireland and the northern parts of the uk are being hit by the hurricane and everywhere else the sun is red and everythings all yellow its a mess

Yes I’m in the north west right next to Ireland, we had a blood sun today and i got a bad migraine from it and everything was just like you said sksk

Okay you guys, I know I’m super early BUT I love Halloween, and here in the good old North West of Ireland we take Halloween SERIOUSLY so get ready for some spoopy fun with 


I can’t wait to see cute ghosts and carved pumpkins (or turnips if you wanna be historically accurate), I want to see flickering candles and dark nights and ruined buildings, fun costumes and fantastic cosplays and feel gothic vibes- and, most importantly, read spooky books!

Love you all, just tag #challenge your shelf to take part!

cerothenull  asked:

Not eating honey is not pro-Vegan. You are hurting the bees that actually pollinate those plants you have people working slave wages to pick for you

You are saying that I am hurting bees due to a single post that describes how industrialised beekeepers treat their bees, not to mention it has more than 20k notes, so I highly doubt you took time to read all the answers I gave. I answered that post and people choose to ignore it. 

It is easy to jump into conclusions without even seeing both parts. I said that I support beekeepers that do not commercialize their honey I never said that we don’t need to care about them or that beekeepers aren’t needed, that’s a big difference and that’s why I said people often read between the lines when it comes to vegan posts. 

I do not have to eat honey or buy honey to actually do something about bees, and that’s where people fail to realize what we are saying. Of course there are beekeepers now that rely on that to survive and I know many of them want the best for the bees as well; what we are asking is a change of mindset and stop seeing bees as honey producers, because they are more than that. We are asking to think about the issue beyond of consuming honey, to look for a different future where instead of seeing how the hell are we going to fix things, to actually see them in the wild, without problems and without being used, as they once were.

Nobody is saying to stop all beekeepers from what they’re doing now, that’s insane and everyone knows that, is as senseless as saying that everyone will stop eating meat this week. The ask was directed to a vegan blog that gives a vegan answer of why vegans do not consume honey, the answer never said we didn’t care about bees or that we wanted all beekeepers gone. I didn’t say lies in my answer, I said things that do happen and mostly in big commercialized bee farms that are more there for profit than for anything else. 

I never said that beekeepers as a whole were bad, I said honey consumption were bad because it is hurting bees, like it or not, the fact that are beekeepers that care doesn’t change the reality that the vast majority and the ones that control the honey supply do not care, and that’s what I was referring too.

Anyways, I know you tried to be an ass, too bad I do not care about senseless stuff like that. You forget you eat fruits, vegetables, legumes and everything that is picked by underpaid people too; and yes maybe you think I’m from the US or any country alike that treats their hard workers like shit; gladly I’m not and I have the blessing of being able to support local farmers each week and I don’t have to support that oppressing system you referred too, and that doesn’t mean I do not care, I care more than you do I bet. 

You probably

  1. don’t give a shit about the lives of slaughterhouse workers: how they are usually on shitty contracts, are usually poor and people of color (PoC), how they don’t have basic working rights, and how often times they are undocumented.
  2. don’t give a shit about how big, rich, Western, white countries go into other countries: usually (again) poor, underprivileged, native areas that are (again) usually inhabited by PoC. This takes land away from the people in that region or country and gives it to a) the livestock and/or b) the crops raised for that livestock.
  3. don’t give a shit about the fact that animal product consumption is causing deforestation: there are undiscovered plants and other things in these areas that could help with medicine, not to mention that rain forests and other land contributes to 20% or so of the Earth’s oxygen. This effects not only non-human animals, but human animals as well.
  4. don’t give a shit about the people back in their homes: in rich, white countries like the United States who live next to these factory farms. How their water quality is shit, the air quality is shit, the soil turns to shit and how they have higher rates of ailments that don’t effect people who don’t live near factory farms. This also leads to the areas being more poverty stricken.
  5. don’t realize that they too (unless they fancy themselves to only live on meat, dairy, milk, honey and other animal products) eat the same exact fruits, vegetables and other plant-based foods that those same farm workers pick for a plant-based diet.


And just to not leave you hanging with the bees situation, we do have options to support, where people take care about bees without selling their honey, which is the point of everything I’ve been trying to say since that question I got. Here are just some examples, feel free to search for more options as well.