After a two-hour bus ride to Letterfrack past hills and hills and hills, we jumped off the bus and walked to our hostel to drop off our bags. Once we got settled in our room, we darted out to Diamond Hill. Thankfully the weather was nice that first day, and we successfully made it to the top! We would have loved to take more pictures and enjoyed the view longer, but the winds were picking up and the weather was starting to look ugly. We were later rewarded for our achievement at the restaurant/pub connected with our hostel. For showing a picture of us at the summit, Scott got a free bowl of fresh Atlantic salmon chowder and I got a free bowl of Tomato Provence-style Soup (both fantastic)! Amid enjoying a match or two of rugby on TV with other Irishmen and women gathered in the pub, we enjoyed the time together playing card games, reading, talking, and hiking around the small town.
Sunday, we hiked to the next town over to see the Kylemore Abbey that we had seen from the summit of Diamond Hill. In the afternoon, we hiked around Connemara. There was a constant drizzle and the winds were fierce but the pull to enjoy the beautiful landscape was too strong. Arriving at the final 3 km loop that goes to the summit of Diamond Hill, Scott went off to climb it again and I walked the lower loop. Scott and I met up later on the lower trail as he shared his disappointment of not making the summit. He was only about 100 vertical feet shy of the summit, but the overpowering winds, the nearly zero visibility, and increasing rain changed his mind. I was proud of his wise decision.
Overall it was a great adventure! We had fun seeing a new area, exploring the terrain and experiencing the small town life in Letterfrack. We started back to work today and tonight hosted our Tuesday night dinner complete with quiche and cranberry-orange scones. Thanks for your prayers!
Continue to pray for wisdom for our remaining time here. We are surprisingly about half way, which is hard to believe! Scott has more and more recently been able to have some great conversations in the school and with youth at the cafe. He will write a blog more specifically about this soon, but please pray for wisdom in these conversations.