“Travel and change of place impart new vigour to the mind.”

 – Seneca

11 reasons why Roscommon is the best county in Ireland


  1. Lakes – Lough Allen and Lough Ree
  2. Great Towns – Boyle, Frenchpark, Roscommon, Castlerea, Strokestown, Athlone and Ballaghaderreen
  3. Historic houses
  4. Golf courses – if you like ruining a good walk that is…
  5. Nature – Rivers teaming with fish, woods and forests and don’t forget the bogs!
  6. Roscommon Lamb – pass the mint sauce please
  7. Roscommon Castle – looks lovely doesn’t it
  8. Good nightlife – okay so this might be over egging the pudding…
  9. Mining experience – visit the coal mining museum in Arigna
  10. Home to Chris O’Dowd
  11. Primrose and blue steel Roscommon football team

Overland Odyssey to the Orient – The Prologue

The Prologue

The cliche that a journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step is misleading. Before I took that first step on my 5,150 mile journey* I felt like I had run a marathon.  The list of tasks to be completed seemed endless at first. Obtaining a CELTA qualification and quitting my awful job was the easy part. Sorting through a lifetime’s accumulation of bits and pieces and miscellaneous crap, throwing away what was not required and putting the rest into storage was hard. Everything had to be moved, as much as possible was recycled.  The St Gemma’s Hospice and St George’s Crypt charity shops both accepted a lot of my stuff hopefully, they will make some money from them.

Getting my house into a good condition where it could be rented out was even harder.  Planning my journey was fun but getting the tickets and visas was less so.

A Citycabs black and white taxi

Before I left I managed to fit in a day at Headingley to watch a county cricket match between Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire with Percy, Chris and Cousin Martin.  Yorkshire had a bad day at the crease but went on to win the match. A sunny day , the sound of leather on willow, good company, good food and plenty of ale – life doesn’t get much better than this.
The last few days were hectic but on August 7th at 13:00 British Summer Time I found myself standing outside my house waiting for a taxi that would take me on the first part of my journey.
* That’s as the crow flies the actual distance travelled was much greater.