…via Conor Pass and Annascaul…
Unfortunately, Conor Pass is now closed to buses. Some say it’s concern over erosion to the shoulder of the road; some say it’s concern that the buses keep whacking the overhang on the way down. Either way, all we were able to do was go up the wider side to the top, look around, then drive back down. The day was very overcast and we weren’t able to see the full panorama that sunshine would have allowed.
In Annascaul we found Hanrahan’s pub again. The old owner has retired (we could see him watching television in the back room) and the bar is now run by his son. However, he had gone off to Dublin to see Bruce Springsteen. His sister, Moira, was tending the counter. The place is slightly fixed up from our last visit but still largely the same. We had a Guinness or two and then headed onward.
Dingle turned out to be somewhat of a non-event…or perhaps I should say a major event…for me. We had a quick bite in The Marina Bar (Gavin no longer works there). I started feeling slightly odd but put it down to heat and tired. Later that evening I totally lost my sh** with Laurie over something trivial and, shortly after that, found myself standing on the street by myself totally disoriented, sweating, feeling tight in the chest, and unsure of how to get to our hotel (which was literally 100 yards away). A few hours later I was in the back of an ambulance headed for Tralee. I spent the next 14 hours there having four ECGs, three blood tests, two X-rays and one CT, talking to a half dozen doctors and eating really bad food. They ended up ruling out a heart attack, decided severe dehydration wasn’t the cause (duh, I could have told them that), and no sign of diabetes. However, there was evidence of an ischemic event and they wanted me to stay several days for more accurate testing. I checked myself out of the hospital at that point since they said they weren’t actually going to DO anything for me until those tests (I had them run when I got back to the States and the diagnosis appears to have been correct) and Killarney was only 15 minutes from the hospital if I had to come back.
So, no Dingle for me. I got a cab from the hospital to Killarney in the afternoon and spent a relatively quiet and early evening.