Anthony, our Boyne View B&B host, makes the best scrambled eggs I’ve ever eaten. How can you not put your faith in a man who has such complete alchemical mastery of the egg? So when he told us that Fore was a delightful sleepy little Irish village, we were inclined to believe him.
Sleepy. When JC and I arrived in Fore just before noon comatose was the word that came to mind. Nothing was open. Nothing was moving. After our drive from Trim my desire for espresso was overshadowed by our requirement to find a toilet. Looking around I surmised this would not be a place to find an espresso, even the push button machine version popular here and only a final desperate option as far as I’m concerned. But at this point toilets were our immediate quest and we even walked to the other end of the village – OK, so it’s only two blocks – to see if the church was open. It wasn’t.
I suggested optimistically to JC that perhaps one of the two side-by-side pubs might open at noon. So we wandered back to the picnic table outside the pub front doors. Just then a van pulled up. The driver hopped out and came over to greet us. “Where’yez from?” he said as he stuck out his hand to shake ours. For a fleeting moment we thought he might be the pub owner come to open the place. Nope. He was deliveringseveral containers of milk which he carefully balanced on an empty beer keg next to the pub front door. He was just being friendly and we spent several minutes listening to him talk about places he’s visited in the States. “Ah,” he said as he hopped back into the van and sped off to his next delivery, “they’ll open soon enough.” Not soon enough for us. We made our way back to the car park and the next village.
We were back in Fore by 1:30. Progress. The very small tourist office-public toilet-cafe-gift shop was just opening. The woman in charge was unloading her car with rhubarb, peach, and apple tarts and bags of scones she had made earlier that morning. We had come to Fore to visit ancient sites, one of which required a key. The woman told us, “Oh, now you can be getting the key from the second pub down the road. That’s the woman just there walking her dog. I expect she’ll be back at the pub in half an hour.” JC and I stepped onto the sidewalk and looked after the woman and the aged overweight canine. From the look of her wrapped ankle and speed of the dog we knew it would be more like an hour – a suspicion she confirmed when we caught up with her and shared our desire to visit the locked anchorite tower. JC and I had a leisurely wander through the nearby monastic ruins and when I went back to collect the key, now well after 3:00, the pub was still closed. Suddenly the door opened and, with her mobile phone at her ear, the woman gave me big smile, told me she had seen me through the window, handed me the key, said to enjoy and stay as long as we liked, and slammed the door closed again.
We were in no rush that day. A good thing. So for us the slow rhythm of this sleepy little village was indeed delightful.