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WheresCherie.COM Quote
"Television has proved that people will look at anything rather than each other." -- Ann Landers

207--Ireland: Dzogchen Beara, The Castle Hike
@ Book & Movie Reviews     Apr 02 2004 - 09:08 PST
cherie writes: There is a phenomenon with travelers. We always seem to be talking about where we are going, or where we have been. But the people I met at Dzogchen Beara were content to simply be where they were.

No one stumbles upon Dzogchen Beara randomly. It is a place of fate. Nothing is a coincidence.

It’s where Drew and I met a friend we’ll never forget—Enrico.

“My name is Enrico,” he introduced himself.
“Is that a German accent I detect?” I asked.
“Yes, and I am baking fresh bread.” He spoke the truth; the hostel reeked of the warm smell of yeast. I made a mental note: Bald German bread-maker (with a smile I’ll never forget) is named Enrico. Odd name for a German, I thought.

“Can I touch your head?” I asked. I figured I should just get the question out of the way, so I could stop thinking about it.
“Yes,” Enrico answered calmly.
“It feels fuzzy,” I said.
“I like it,” Enrico said.
“I like it, too.” And from then on, we were friends. Bald men are like pregnant women—everyone wants to touch them.

Enrico has a blissful innocence about him. He’s the type of guy that you trust before he ever has a chance to prove it. While I write down the insightful things that Drew says, Enrico is the type of man whose wordless company must be experienced.

One day, Drew, Enrico and I decided to go on a search for castles. We hiked through the endless beauty and solitude of Dzogchen Beara.

During the hike, I stumbled upon Drew and Enrico in the middle of a conversation. I heard Drew ask Enrico: “Have you ever done it in that position?”

Enrico stood up and said: “No, you do it like this.” Then Enrico, a Tae Kwon Do master, showed Drew the “correct position.” The boys were talking about martial arts. “Only at a Buddhist retreat,” I thought.

That day we found an old castle and a forged a new friendship. Drew said: “This is so ironic. Here we are alive, walking into the castle’s carcass.”

Like children, we climbed up and down the walls of the deserted castle. Drew profoundly noticed that: “A moment is only lost, when you cease to appreciate it.” Amidst the bottomless silence of the ancient castle, we found a never ending friendship. You never forget a friend you find a castle with.

Click on each picture to see it full size.

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A beach girl with a beached boat.

A beach girl with a beached boat.

Can a cat be a Buddhist?

Can a cat be a Buddhist?

The Buddha.

The Buddha.

Drew and Enrico.  Young men in an old house.

Drew and Enrico. Young men in an old house.

Excuse me, is there a tree in the living room?

Excuse me, is there a tree in the living room?

Cherie and Enrico.

Cherie and Enrico.

Did dwarfs live here?  Or is Drew a giant?

Did dwarfs live here? Or is Drew a giant?

Let's climb through the window!

Let's climb through the window!

Cherie, Drew and Enrico.

Cherie, Drew and Enrico.

The boys take a rest.

The boys take a rest.

The only person we see on our hike is a local farmer named Michael.

The only person we see on our hike is a local farmer named Michael.

Of course the Irish door should be green!

Of course the Irish door should be green!

That's not a castle.  It's just the guard tower.

That's not a castle. It's just the guard tower.

Hey!

Hey!

This old boat.

This old boat.

I love the cow's earrings.

I love the cow's earrings.

The cows must be relaxed because they know that Buddhists don't eat them.

The cows must be relaxed because they know that Buddhists don't eat them.

Sometimes the road to freedom is paved.

Sometimes the road to freedom is paved.

Hey!  There's a castle!

Hey! There's a castle!

What happens when Cherie skippers a boat!

What happens when Cherie skippers a boat!

Drew in search of a different view.

Drew in search of a different view.

The rib cage of the decaying boat.

The rib cage of the decaying boat.

Stop monkeying around!

Stop monkeying around!

An old boat with an older castle.

An old boat with an older castle.

The boys revist their primal instincts.

The boys revist their primal instincts.

Just hanging out.

Just hanging out.

Cherie and Drew with the castle.

Cherie and Drew with the castle.

The monkey tree.

The monkey tree.

Monkey boy, monkey tree.

Monkey boy, monkey tree.

Exploring the castle's ruins.

Exploring the castle's ruins.

The smell of Furze surrounds the castle with the sweet smell of coconuts.

The smell of Furze surrounds the castle with the sweet smell of coconuts.

The castle from the inside.

The castle from the inside.

Mind the mud.

Mind the mud.

Where's the roof?

Where's the roof?

One giant step for Enrico.

One giant step for Enrico.

A room with a view.

A room with a view.

The vines have taken over.

The vines have taken over.

Snuggling vines.

Snuggling vines.

Let's climb to the top!

Let's climb to the top!

A little to the right.

A little to the right.

Surreal windows.

Surreal windows.

Now that's a cathedral ceiling.

Now that's a cathedral ceiling.

Brickwork that stands the test of time.  Sort of.

Brickwork that stands the test of time. Sort of.

Two men who look up to me.  What more could a girl ask for?

Two men who look up to me. What more could a girl ask for?

What happens when the stairs are out of order.

What happens when the stairs are out of order.

Doorway to the past.

Doorway to the past.

These stables are a mess!  And there aren't even any horses!

These stables are a mess! And there aren't even any horses!

Are you sick of seeing castles yet?  Not yet.

Are you sick of seeing castles yet? Not yet.

It's quite a sight to stumble upon.

It's quite a sight to stumble upon.

Can you read Irish?

Can you read Irish?

Karate Kid...eat your heart out!

Karate Kid...eat your heart out!

Ruins.

Ruins.

Posers.

Posers.

Don't fight!!

Don't fight!!

Relax.  Let the blood go to your head.

Relax. Let the blood go to your head.

An old-fashioned gym.

An old-fashioned gym.

Not what you think.  He's holding up barbed wire!

Not what you think. He's holding up barbed wire!

The walk home.

The walk home.

We pass a charming house.

We pass a charming house.

Through the woods.

Through the woods.

Perhaps Enrico and Drew forgot what the meditation garden was for?

Perhaps Enrico and Drew forgot what the meditation garden was for?

Take that!

Take that!

The master and the student.  "Look for your power within Drew-son."

The master and the student. "Look for your power within Drew-son."

Watch out for my hair!

Watch out for my hair!

Tae Kwon Do at sunset.

Tae Kwon Do at sunset.

After a long hike, there is no place like Dzogchen Beara.

After a long hike, there is no place like Dzogchen Beara.

The sunset.

The sunset.

Grace bakes fresh bread from scratch.

Grace bakes fresh bread from scratch.

Warm bread to feed the weary hikers.

Warm bread to feed the weary hikers.

Enrico smiles at the finished product.

Enrico smiles at the finished product.

Enrico and Aiofe.  Doesn't that feel nice?

Enrico and Aiofe. Doesn't that feel nice?

Drew looks at the map...where should we go to next?  How about Killarney?

Drew looks at the map...where should we go to next? How about Killarney?