Carpe Lux Solis


The weather in Galway over the past week has been something to behold. It’s so beautiful, I want to make out with it. And I really love how the Irish go nuts soaking in the sunshine.

Sunset is around 10:30 pm, which makes for these wonderful summer nights of booze and music and sidewalk cafes. Everyone sits outside, and because it’s such a small little city, we all know each other. The other day while carrying my laundry detergent capsules through town, I heard someone call my name, went over to say hello, sampled some Stella Artois Cidre, wished them well, and went on about my merry way.

Whenever I’m home, I’ve got my balcony door open and live music floats in all afternoon and well into the evening. I’ve heard some damn good originals, some fairly decent covers, and the worst rendition of La Bamba ever performed by a native Spanish speaker.

Tourist season is in full effect, and the double-decker tour buses glide past my balcony. There’s even this annoying little tourist train that does the loop around town, which is going to make for one exciting incident of public intoxication sometime in my near future.


Galway at 10:30 pm tonight.

I’m working on practicing patience with the tourists, starting with the raspy-voiced, bikini-clad American sisters in Charlie Byrne’s the other day, screaming to each other across the store about The Aeneid. I let an Italian kid – named, no kidding, Massimo – practice his English on me for a full half-hour today. I’m even getting used to the frat boys. I had forgotten that Galway is on the frat-daddy trail; I must have blocked it out from last time I was here, freshly graduated from a university experience not unlike Season Three of Veronica Mars. But now that I am approaching cougar age, and have enjoyed the television show Greek, I find the daily meat market in the Latin Quarter somewhat amusing.

Thanks to all the running in Berlin, I am now able to run the 10k from the Spanish Arch to Blackrock and back, made all the more enjoyable by the fact that I don’t have to wear my Under Armour. Then there are the walks on the beach, looking for pretty shells while the washed-up seaweed whispers to me and the gulls either laugh or call out warnings, I’m not sure which.

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Apparently, there is a tradition in Ireland of Leaving Cert Weather, which dictates that the week when high-school-aged students are taking their big final exams is predictably the best weather all year. And I love it, I do. I’ve even gotten a little overheated at times, which is something I never thought I would say about Ireland.

But I need I break.

I have so much reading and writing to do. This is not thesis weather, this is sit on the grass and split a bottle of wine with friends weather. It is killing me. In Texas, we take this kind of thing for granted, but in Ireland, you have to enjoy it when you can. Carpe lux solis… just not right now.

So I am asking the weather gods for one week of rain and drizzle. That’s all I need. Just seven to ten days of stay-indoors, reading, writing, tea-drinking weather so I can get ahead on my thesis. Plus, I have all these broody new eye make-up tricks that don’t fly when everyone is outside and smiling. Not to mention all the summer movies and episodes of Modern Family that I missed while I was in Germany.

I am a little sorry for the tourist who might arrive during the next week; but hey, you don’t come to Ireland for a sun holiday. Just one week. I’ll work as fast as my little fingers can type and as well as my little brain can comprehend the research, and I should be in pretty good shape, thesis-wise, by then. I can already see the clouds gathering. Send the sun back out on June 18, and I promise I’ll be ready to enjoy every moment of it.