As we serpentined our way through Donegal suddenly there was trouble. Barriers blocked our way with the only explanation a small sign that read “traffic diverted.” Google said we were poised for greatness with just a few circuitous blocks to go before we reached the bottom of town where we expected to find a longish strip of a parkup on the River Eske . Just our luck and now this, but we persevered and stumbled back onto the intersection just as it joined the parkup entrance. The next problem was that the parkup was apparently all parked up, looking more like a used RV dealership than a public parking lot.
We slowly trundled through the blinding white sea of aluminum motor homes when just as I was searching for a plan B, I saw it. A small camper van had just vacated a last chance parking space, probably tired of walking so far into town. I admit that I had to jog Escape Velocity back and forth, sometimes making scant progress, sometimes not at all. It was incredibly tight in this lot filled with oversized vehicles, most of which were proud of their designated parking space.
I thought I’d take an orientation walk around the lot, eventually running into an explanation for the crowds and traffic. Welcome to the Donegal Summer FunFest, read a large poster at the entrance to the car park. Live music, vender carts, Celtic classic car meet, special savings at the pubs, even, my personal favorite, face painting were some of the fun filled activities listed, while this vaguely Nordic looking dude points menacingly at Main Street Donegal.
We took his suggestion and headed up towards this charming hamlet.
Dodging the obligatory Irish rain shower or two, we located the stage in the center of town where a fun band called The Tumbling Paddies were knocking out what we’ve found to be a strange worldwide phenomenon, John Denver’s “Country Roads.” Seriously, we’ve heard energetic renditions of this sing-along ditty from Zanzibar to Kathmandu, Thailand to Tasmania and beyond. We’re no longer surprised, we just wait for it.
Back at Escape Velocity we found her inadvertently taking part in a Morgan auto show.
We couldn’t leave Donegal without a tour through the ruins of Donegal Abby which is conveniently located at the end of our parkup.
Turns out the parkup at the end of Donegal was actually centrally located.