We spent two nights on the quiet Aran Island: Inis Oirr. The last ferry from the island to the mainland leaves in the early evening and it is then that the little island comes alive as local children chase their siblings down to the town pub and join the entire town crowded round the televised football game. We listen to local Gaelic chatter as we spoon steaming seafood chowder and brown bread into our mouths. Our AirBnb host Pairic, whose family has farmed Inis Oirr for generations, shares how this land resides in his heart. He has worked it from brambles and stones and built wall upon connecting wall. My heart is touched to hear of someone so grounded to the land of his birth. Zade sleeps in for a rest day and I wake early for a day of adventure. After Paraic's hearty breakfast of Irish bacon, eggs, and sausage I ferry to explore the more polished and most visited sister island Inis Mor by bicycle. A horse stands waiting to greet me as I cycle by on my way to Dun Aonghasa, a prehistoric semi circular hill fort perched 300 feet above the Atlantic. I race to discover The Serpent's Hole, a natural rectangular shaped pool into which the sea ebbs and flow at the bottom of the cliffs before my ferry returns me back to our sweet Inis Orr for the night. Before sunset we walk the sea path to see the amber rusted Plassey's Shipwreck, a cargo ship marooned by storm on the island in the 60's. Before we leave we choose a few famed Aran sweaters to keep the family cozy this fall. The shopkeeper tells me of his small island "I like it and I love it."
We stop for a quick peek at the Cliffs of Moher, ya know, since we're in the neighborhood.