Posts tagged ‘Beach’

May 9, 2013

A ‘thin’ place

I’ve read of ‘thin places’, a term originally used by Christians in the Celtic-speaking world of the early Middle Ages to describe places where it seemed the veil between heaven and earth was ‘thin’.


This all came to mind recently as we were walking along Harbour View Beach (off the R600 between Timoleague and Kinsale).


We have walked there many times, but it felt particularly ‘thin’ that day…  IMG_20130508_174149

(All photos taken on my phone and processed with Instagram)


October 24, 2012

At Red Strand

We were walking back having spent some time exploring the rock pools when four horses and their riders came down to the sea.  The sun was low in the sky and so as they came towards us they were silhouetted, with the headland and lighthouse behind them.  They took it in turns to canter through the surf from one end of the beach to the other, it was a wonderful thing to watch…

June 8, 2012

Horse & Rider

A horse and rider on Inchydoney beach, taken towards the end of last month.

(See larger version here.)

December 14, 2011


Beach near Garranefeen, Kilbrittain, Co. Cork

One of the best methods of stress-busting I know is to find a beach, (preferably a deserted one and ideally on a cold windy wintery day) and just walk.   In this place of wind, water and waves, prayer is never too far away…

June 25, 2010

Barley Cove

A little while ago now, for a belated family celebration we took a trip an hour-and-a-bit West from here to Barley Cove for the night.  It is a beautiful place.  We got a great deal on a family room overlooking the beach, which was only a couple of minutes walk away.  If the sun is shining it is hard to beat Ireland (that’s a very big ‘IF’ though)!

I limited myself to just two rolls of film and a 50mm lens, so no sweeping landscapes, just little details here and there…

March 18, 2009

Ballybrannigan Strand

Nikon D70s, f9, 1/320 sec, ISO 200, 27mm equivalent (click to enlarge)

This beach can often be found deserted throughout the year (save for the odd sunny day here and there). Yesterday the sun was out – and so were the crowds (sort of). I think the people on the beach help to give depth and scale to the picture.

My inspiration here was that greatest of photographers, Ansel Adams, specifically his picture “Point Sur, Storm”, taken in 1946. Have a look at the link it is a great photo.

December 5, 2008

Walking along the beach with the Lord

Panasonic LX1, 1/400 sec, f5.6, ISO 80, Ev-0.3, RAW, 28mm equivalent. (Click to enlarge)

One of the joys of winter is being able to find a beach and have the whole place to yourself. The blissful solitude of such a walk is the perfect antidote to the busyness and hurry of the workplace.

I suppose some might call it “connecting with nature”, but when for example walking on the above beach a couple of weeks ago, to me at least there was a strong sense of God’s presence. It was like being absorbed into a work of art, the stunning low winter light, the breathtaking wind like the ruach of God’s Spirit and the gentle, almost hypnotic sound of the waves all combining to bring peace and soothing to the soul. God’s Creation, God’s handiwork, I think He loves us to enjoy it, like a parent giving a gift to a child not because they have been good, but because they are loved…

I thought of the famous “Footprints poem” – having done a Google search for this, I was surprised to discover that there are three versions of it (though all pretty similar) and a rather poignant Leona Lewis song of the same name.

One night a man had a dream. He dreamed He was walking along the beach with the LORD. Across the sky flashed scenes from His life. For each scene He noticed two sets of footprints in the sand. One belonging to Him and the other to the LORD.

When the last scene of His life flashed before Him, he looked back at the footprints in the sand. He noticed that many times along the path of His life there was only one set of footprints. He also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times of His life.

This really bothered Him and He questioned the LORD about it. LORD you said that once I decided to follow you, you’d walk with me all the way. But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life there is only one set of footprints. I don’t understand why when I needed you most you would leave me.

The LORD replied, my precious, precious child, I Love you and I would never leave you! During your times of trial and suffering when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.

Carolyn Carty, 1963

October 21, 2008

Surfing at Garrettstown

Panasonic LX1, 1/500sec, f4.5, ISO 100, 6.3mm (Click to enlarge)

Garrettstown is a fantastic place for surfers of all ages and abilities. You get those who are clearly beginners mixing with those who make the whole thing look so easy that they might as well be walking on water! If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you can see a few more surfers in the background – there were at least 50 of them out there that day…

July 28, 2008

Pick up the stick and throw!


“Play with me!”
Nikon D70s 1/500 sec, f11, ISO 200, 18mm, RAW

We love going down to Garrettstown beach near Kinsale and it seemed that last Saturday, even though the weather wasn’t great many other people (and animals) had the same idea. There we were making sandcastles and digging holes when we had an unexpected (and uninvited) visitor in the shape of a very hairy, wet and sandy dog. Our canine companion had kindly brought a stick with him and kept coming a little closer and dropping the stick then coming closer still. No doubt he couldn’t believe how thick I was being, after all he was a dog and he was giving me a stick – go figure! Eventually he pestered me so much that I picked up the stick and threw it (not nearly far enough). The furry wet sandy mass came to life, bounded after the stick and hastily brought it back. I sort of was enjoying the game now so I went to pick up the stick again – but he grabbed it before me and wouldn’t let go! The game of ‘throw’ had now become a game of ‘tug’. I wasn’t a good playmate, he soon got bored and ran off to find someone else who could do better…

I’m reminded of what Jesus said about persistence in prayer. There was a man who had a late night visitor but not enough food to give him, so he went over to his friends house to borrow some food. But the friend shouted out from upstairs that the door was locked and his children were in bed and to come back in the morning. But the man kept on and on asking until eventually the friend gave him the three loaves of bread he was asking for (Luke 18). The point I suppose is that sometimes God wants to see just how much we really want what we are asking Him for, is it just a whim or is it something that we are heartfelt and passionate about? If we persist asking God will eventually pick up the stick and throw!

Jesus said:”So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Luke 11:9-10)

July 21, 2008

Ballywilling Strand

Ballywilling Co. Cork

Canon A570is, 3 exposure panorama

We discovered this wonderful place recently on a family outing, a relatively hidden beach not too far away from the much more popular Garryvoe Beach in East Cork. I wonder who lives in that little house, not a bad view – though perhaps a bit scary during a winter storm?!