The Aftermath of Hurricane Ophelia

Hurricane Ophelia hit Ireland yesterday and while it was a baby compared to the monsters that ravaged the Caribbean and US it still did plenty of damage and left 3 people dead. Many areas were left without electricity or running water for most of the day. A day later and there are still areas without those basic amenities. Telecoms services were disrupted too as lines were cut and exchanges and mobile sites ran out of power. 30,000 people were without access to phone or Internet access. A red alert was declared nation-wide. Schools closed (for 2 days), public transport wasn’t running, shops and businesses didn’t open. There was a definite fear and expectation that this would be a big one. And it was. Gusts of 156kmh were recorded off Roches Point!

We were without power from just after 11am, then the mobile phone network, Eir, went down, except my wife’s phone was able to go online for minutes at a time throughout the day. Winds really picked up around 10am, and lasted until after 2pm with driving rain almost horizontal in the wind. Later in the day I walked around Blarney village and from the far corner of the square got a weak signal from a remote antenna and had just enough connectivity to get a few text messages.

Trees behind our home were knocked down by the wind, blocking most of the main Waterloo Road. Luckily the very tallest trees survived as they’re within reach of some of the houses!

Even this stop sign was twisted around by the wind, and mushrooms flattened too..

Two trees were knocked down in the village square, and someone had attempted to drive a car and caravan up that narrow road before getting stuck and abandoning their vehicle!

Power came back late yesterday evening, as did mobile data, but friends are still without power even now so it’s going to take some time before things are back to normal. Our satellite dish is broken, and it’ll be early November before someone can come out to replace it. Parts of my garden fence blew over too, but that was on it’s last legs anyway! A TV antenna ended up in our front garden, but I have no idea who owned it.

This morning there was a lovely sunrise, and the sky was a gorgeous mix of blue and soft orange. 🙂

Next weekend we can look forward to #StormBrian apparently. Hopefully it won’t be as bad as Ophelia.

Forever McDonalds

Google Photos created an animation from a number of photos I made outside the McDonalds in Douglas last year around this time of the year.

Off travelling again, 2016 edition

The Automattic Grand Meetup starts tomorrow so I’m in Cork Airport waiting for my flight to London.

The weird thing about timezones means I leave here in the morning and get to Vancouver in the morning. And it’s still the same day. That also means I need to stay awake so much longer. 

“Today” is going to be a long day. Zzzz.

Star Wars actors arrive in Cork

Nice. They’re getting off the plane directly into cars.

I was wrong, they had to walk to the main terminal and go through passport control.

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And here are their drivers who kindle posed for a photo. The film crew came out a few minutes later.

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The Swollen River Martin

A few photos of the River Martin in Blarney, swollen after the rains of Storm Frank yesterday. Not pictured are the broken garden fences I haphazardly repaired in torrential rain last night. At least the rain stopped this morning to let me repair the roof of our shed.

Cold tonight with clear spells and light winds over the northern half of the country with temperatures falling to between 0 and 4 degrees with some icy patches. But further south, cloud and winds will increase with rain developing and pushing northwards through the night (falling as sleet or snow in parts of Ulster towards dawn). Winds will be light variable at first then easterly and increase fresh to strong veering southwesterly in southern counties later in the night. (met.ie)

Ever wondered how climate change is going to affect Ireland? This post will be of interest to you.

In Ireland the average air temperature has risen by approximately 0.8°C in the last 100 years, with much of the warming occurring towards the end of the 20thcentury, all seasons are warmer. Some of the impacts can already be seen; the start of the growing season for certain species is now up to 10 days earlier, there has been a decrease in the number of days with frost and increase in the number of warm days (days over 20°C).
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Over the last 30 years or so rainfall amounts have increased by approximately 5%, and there is some evidence of an increase in the number of days with heavy rain in the west and northwest. Climate projections for rainfall have greater uncertainty than for temperature, they indicate that overall rainfall amounts in Ireland might decrease slightly, summers are likely to become drier while winters may be wetter especially in the west and north. There are also indications of an increase in the number of very wet days (days with rainfall >20mm).

These projections, applied to river flows, show an increased risk of winter flooding, an increased risk of short duration ‘flash’ floods and to possible water shortages in summer months due to higher temperatures and lower rainfall. The rise in sea levels will make low lying coastal areas more prone to flooding, especially from storm surges.

It warns that the changes will happen slowly so we’re not going to notice them year-on-year but it doesn’t look good.

Winch Wakeboarding at the Lee Fields

Ireland experienced a deluge of rain, and it’s not finished yet, but for some it’s an excuse to wakeboard in a flooded field. 🙂

Nice to see Fergal out there taking photos. He’s not usually the one being photographed!

The missing bit

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There may have been a bit missing from the Ferris Wheel on The Grand Parade yesterday, but I’m informed that all bits are accounted for now.

Sultan Delight on McCurtain Street

Sultan Delight is a new shop opened on McCurtain Street, Cork, near the Everyman and if this post by Billy Lyons is right, near where the famous Hadji Bey had his shop until the 1970s.

Sultan Delight

The shop sells chocolate, Turkish Delight, teas and coffees, spices, cakes, biscuits and more. The chocolate on display is delicious! I had a Chocolate Orange and it was lovely. It’s very sweet and filling so you wouldn’t eat too many. The Chocolate Mint is really nice too and there’s a Chocolate Smarty in the fridge here at home I’m eyeing up but my son has first dibs on that. I’m sure he’ll share with his Dad. Yeah.

Sultan Delight

I also tried a delicious biscuit but I can’t remember what it was called so you’ll have to take my word on it that it was tasty. All the food is hand made, prepared by the owner, Yosra or the chefs at the nearby Sultan Restaurant. There’s also a small alcove in the back where you can enjoy a cup of your favourite beverage and a snack.

Sultan Delight

Go pay them a visit and look around. It’s wonderful to see such a selection of food in a small shop, you’ll love it!