Posted by: mdmusingsie | July 29, 2011

At the Races

It’s Galway Race week, and it’s not just the horses that are on display.  Women are dressed to the nines, some sporting interesting tiny hats.  Even the men are dressing up, many in suits or at least (loosely tied) ties.  With this being a bank holiday weekend as well, the only things moving at anything above a snail’s pace are the horses.  The traffic is gridlock both coming and going from the city center most of the day.

The streets are packed and buskers are out in droves as well, entertaining the crowds and collecting their own winnings.  Even at night, as I’ve headed to and from St. Nicholas’ for the Tunes in the Church concerts, folks are out partying in the streets and pubs.  Wednesday it was the infamous fiddler Tommy Peoples along with Tim Dennehy, Jack Talty, and Brendan and Cormac Begley.  Friday included another exceptionally talented fiddler, Maeve Donnolley, along with Padraig MacDonnacha on the banjo and Terence O’Reilly on guitar and vocals.  Padraig is a natural entertainer, engaging the crowd and providing interesting and humorous insights into the music they performed.  Maybe it’s all the festivals, but the crowds are finally picking up at the church.  The music is such high caliber that I hope people will continue to frequent the venue.

Friday’s concert had a very international audience including visitors from The Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, France, and the US.  I decided to chat with the Italian couple, having so recently returned from Italy.  They were from Verona in the north.   The woman asked how I liked Italy and I said it was hot.  She said she was nearly freezing in Ireland, with the temperatures not quite reaching the 70’s.  I’ll take Ireland weather any day.

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