From the Archives: Bikes in Ireland, 1990...
Logistics got in the way of bringing my bike along with me to Ireland in 1990. I didn't do my homework well enough in advance and so was not sure if whatever model rental car I ended up with would be big enough, nor what I would do with the transport case. As a result, I was bike-less the entire time. That was a bummer, because bikes were all around. Recently, while looking through the photos I took that trip, I notice them quietly in the background of many of the street scenes. Interestingly, they are as often as not, being walked rather than ridden. These days Ireland's large cities, like many around the globe, are rediscovering the benefits of improved bicycle infrastructure, attempting to remake their cores along more livable, non-motor dependent lines. If you notice how narrow some of the streets are, it is not difficult to understand why. These are old cities, ancient towns, laid out and evolved well before the auto hegemony began to leave its unmistakable mark on our urban environments.
rider approaching the Cathedral of St. Nicholas and the Assumption, Galway
Trinity College, Dublin - in Ireland, as in the US, bicycles are a favored mode
of getting to, from, and around university campuses
Sligo street scene
an older gentleman rides past the Market Cross in the center of Kells
another Kells street scene
O'Connell Street, Dublin
yet another bike walker, this time in Kilkenny
O'Connell Street and the O'Connell Monument, Ennis
Bunratty Folk Park, not sure of this one - the bike may have been part of the exhibit
Finally, and this is where I would really have liked my bike, notice the lone rider
descending from the heights of Healy Pass