They do say that a picture tells a thousand words…
2015 was a great year for me. I finished secondary school, got accepted to the college of my dreams and it finally felt like I was growing up a little bit. I’m not going to say ‘becoming an adult’, because that’s far from the truth. Adults are people who pay bills and wear too much brown. I prefer black.
When I was trawling through my Instagram feed, trying to find the perfect photo that summed up 2015 for me, there were so many jumping out at me, but in the end I choose this one:
It’s a selfie (what else was it going to be?) that I took standing 1000 feet above sea-level on the Skellig Cliffs. After our final exams, my best friend and I went on a road trip with her parents, doing the Ring of Kerry, and along our journey we stopped off here. The sights were just gorgeous, and it’s amazing how we take for granted the things we have on our doorstep.
I chose this photo as my favourite of 2015 for two very different reasons. The first, and slightly more sane, is because being there really made me appreciate how beautiful and wild Ireland really is, and it definitely opened my eyes to an Ireland outside Dublin. I’ve always loved to travel, but I never considered going ‘down the country’, as we say here, as going on holiday, until we went to Kerry. I’ve always said that I’m going to get out of Ireland as soon as I could, and move abroad the first chance I get, and even though that still stands to fact, after this holiday was the first time I ever considered coming back.
Standing here, at the very edge of the drop, with only some chicken wire separating me from near death, I felt like I was standing on the edge of the world. This brings me to my second reason for choosing this photo.
Unbeknownst to me was that, while I was standing there on that cliff taking that selfie, wearing my mothers stolen necklace, I was actually taking the picture that would really sum up my whole 2015. That year was the ‘cliff’ of my life. I had just climbed up the massive big hill of the Leaving Cert exams, and now I was smiling, looking out at the beautiful view of freedom. But there were rocks at the bottom. I was about to start college, and suddenly my very boring, nerdy life was geared into hyper speed and I was having to make all these decisions about my future. No amount of career guidance or stress-fueled hair changes in the hopes of your life changing (of which I had 6) can help you when you’re free from school and thrown into the deep end.
I think I’m making this road trip sound much more philosophical and Kerouac-esque than it really was. In the moment, it was just a really nice time away from home, with lots of beer and barbecued chicken, but looking back on it now, that holiday is a very fond memory of mine, and I think it had a much more subconscious effect on me than I first realized.
Here are some more photographs of the views from the top of the Skellig Cliffs. My selfie really doesn’t do them justice, and I wouldn’t forgive myself if I hadn’t included them!
Okay, maybe that wasn’t a thousand words, but really, if there were a thousand, who would read them all? I’m not that interesting…
Make sure to have a read of my blog post about driving The Ring of Kerry here! I’m really curious to see what photo I’ll choose to sum up 2016 this time next year…
Make sure to have a peep at the Social Print Studio photobooks too, they’re very cute. I personally adore the metal prints and posters too!
Stay classy boys and girls,