The blessed relief. Once the feeding and drinking frenzy ended on Stephen's Day, I was able to snatch some moments that seemed worth while:
1. Seeing Solerina, Beef or Salmon and Hedgehunter on a glorious day at Leopardstown. The beauty and nobility of the horses contrasting admirably with the bloated arrivistes who owned them. And then of course the cute tribe of trainers and jockeys for whom the whole show is run.
2. Walking across a deserted Barleycove beach in West Cork with my cavorting and delighted dogs - those labradors do so love the water.
3. A brace of pints in Levis's in Ballydehob and then across the road to feast at the estimable Annies. Sad that it's hardly likely that the Levis's experience will be repeated as the two old dears are very frail these days. The older one (Julia?) is very alert and misses little of the conversation - however she has problems with sores on her legs and is the weaker of the two. The other more taciturn one picks relentlessly at a large wart on her face between filling pints.