Saturday, 19 January 2013
Sea and snow on a winter’s afternoon
Living so close to the M50 in South Dublin has so many advantages – close to the mountains, close to the sea, and still within easy distance of the airport and the city centre.
Early in the afternoon, two of us went down to Bray for a walk on the beach. Bray is only 20 minutes away, and on our way we could see the snow covering the Dublin and Wicklow Mountains.
This afternoon’s walk was cold and crisp. But despite temperatures close to zero, there was a good number of walkers along the promenade and the pebbly shore.
Down on the shoreline, the waves were rolling and breaking, and while Bray Head was clear, in the distance between the gaps in the houses it was possible to glimpse some snow on the mountains.
Bray has many good cafés and restaurants, and my favourites include Campo de Fiori on the sea front and Sapori de Campo de Fiori around the corner on Albert Road. But this afternoon for the first time I tried Gusto Italiano on Quinnsborough Road, between the Dart Station and the Main Street.
It proved to be a delightful choice. It’s a tiny place, and it was too cold to sit outside. But we got a table in the cosy balcony area above. The coffee was excellent, the attention was great, and the hand-made biscotti were a genuine treat. This was a taste of real Italy, and on a winter’s day it had me looking forward to a week in Sorrento later this summer.
We had one quick walk back along the Promenade, and on the way back decided there was still enough daylight to have a firsthand look at the snow in the mountains.
We turned off the M50 and drove up past the Hellfire Club and Forest to Kilakee Car Park on the borders of South Dublin and Co Wicklow, overlooking the city. The road further south through the mountains to Glencree and the Wicklow Gap has been closed and traffic was being diverted back down to Glencullen. But the car park was full, and in the fading light of the evening clusters of families were enjoying the snow-covered slopes and making snowmen.