Our Sea- Your Sea
Since the weather was playing us a trick this morning with its rainy an windy presence, we had to make a slight change of our plans. Instead of going to the high and steap cliffs above the seashore of Keem Bay we went to the ancient castle of the piratqueen Grace O´Malley which was built in the 15 hundreds and is situated by the sea.
We were taken there with a minibus by Thomas M and the trip took around 30 minutes. The amazing thing, that I realized on the bus, was the many different nationlities that where gathered together to do the same thing. There were people from Ireland, Bulgaria, Greece, The Philippine Islands, Sweden and Germany.
When we got there Thomas guided us and told us about the history of the castle and the personality of Grace O´Malley. She had many ships and men that served her and the sea was very important for them. She used the castle as her winter residence and they had all their ships in the bay. Thomas told us many interesting stories and things, and the visit was a succesful one.

Daniel Torrkulla


There once came a group from the Rhine
Whose German was better than mine!
They painted and sang
They ate and they drank
And got more and more Irish with time!


Our Sea- Your Sea #2

It was raining cats and dogs in the morning and everybody was afraid to go outside the hostel. Some of us did not even have proper waterproof clothes. The initial plan was to go to Clew Bay but the weather was too wet. The guide offered us another alternative - to visit Grace O`Malley's castle, and we drove there in a nice dry minibus.
I was surprised when I first saw the castle - it turned out to be something like a simple tower. For me, up to this moment, a castle meant something huge, rich and fully decorated. I did not realaize that the Pirate Queen´s castle is from the16th century, her winter residence. I suppose. All of us were impressed by the inner structure and especially by the staircase. The stairs were so narrow and steep that I had to summon all my courage to go to the 4th floor and especially go down the stairs again. Our guide told us several things about every stone there. It was a wonderful learning experience about the history of Ireland, looking into the life of the Pirate Queen!

Travelling to shared landscapes workshop
When I woke up that morning and heard the rain tapping at the windowpane, I realised that our arrangements with our contact person Thomas McLauglin had to be cancelled. Our original plan was to visit a place called "Keem Bay" but instead we had to improvice and together with Thomas we decided to visit a castle where the pirate queen Grace O'Malley used to live back in 16th century.

Since my workshp is studying the importance of the landscape to its human inhabitants, we tried to look for things in the landscape that could have made this a good location for a castle. What we observed was that there was a deep bay that was used for the big ships that O'Malley owned, and because it is so deep the tide would not become a problem for the sailors. There was also a small river just outside the castle that could have provided fresh water, and since the landscape was kind of flat around the tower, the guards had no problem in spotting a enemy.

The castle itself was very fascinating and when we returned to the hostel for lunch, we knew some of the stories behind the famous Irish pirate queen Grace O'Malley.

Fredrik Lundqvist

Instrumental Music Workshop
Today we all practice a traditional German song called "Lorelei". The legend behind this song goes back to the amazing voice of a young lady who sat most of the time on a high cliff beside the river Rhine in Germany. She combed her hair while singing in her lovely voice.

by Silvia Klewer

Europe goes to school
Even before waking up early in the morning I could hear the stormy and rainy weather outside. This would be a day to stay inside the warm hostel infront of the fire place.
Our group is going to the internet-center in Keel today. We want to creat an active world, a virtual school, on the internet with help of Magnus. I really have no idea what it will be like.
With real enthusiasm we start in the early afternoon to the center, happy to be collected in the mini bus by Lilli, so that we don´t need to get wet.
Directly after we arrive Magnus starts to install the needed software. Unfortunately after three hours of trying it is still not possible to get in touch with the server in Sweden. Therefore Magnus shows us a finished version of a virtual chatroom that´s comparable with what we wanted to do.
Perhaps it will be possible to try it another day.

Iris Radermacher

Photo workshop and rain
It was raining cats and dogs. So we decided not to take photographs outside. Instead Laurence taught us how to use the Adobe PhotoShop software. We edited a picture taken the day before by Jutta. The good thing is that we learned that it doesn't matter how bad our photographs are because this software can turn them into works of art!.
We all had to choose a theme and write a concept to show what had made an impression on us during our stay on Achill Island. Afterwards Sean and the group decided which ndividual photographs would fit with which themes.

Tomorrow everybody has to make a one-minute presentation which is in some way poetic and conveys a message that is reflected in their photograph. So we have a lot of homework to do.

Silvia Rode

Painting workshop
It's Tuesday, eight o'clock in the morning. It's stormy outside and the rain is pounding on the windows. It's not just cold and dark outside, .the electric power in the house was down, but what does that matter….. We have got enough inner power and energy to wake up Sean Cannon and in a little while he fixed all our problems.
The workshop members meet at 10 o'clock in cottage 6, warm their fingers on a cup of hot tea and start working. We give short descriptions of our paintings, collect new ideas for our second painting event and make up our minds about how to organize our auction on Friday.
We met the members of the writing-workshop, talked about the links between the paintings and the web novel and coordinated the preparations for the auction. Well done!!! Had a break.
Doing some more sketches, making photographs from our paintings, putting them on the net and starting to do some picture processing and …..
Oh goodness, the day is over!


Creative writing
This morning we started by finishing off the map over all our stories that we worked on all day yesterday. Then we started thinking about the episodes to write while here on Achill. First we "brainstormed" for ideas about what should be part of the first evening on Achill for the characters. We had to think about similar elements that should be in all the stories and how to delay the auction until Friday with the letter. We mapped out our ideas and then started to write our stories from there. We then had a meeting with the O'Donnell workshop group. They showed us their paintings and gave us descriptions of them to include as links in our stories. Together we discussed how we want to end the stories and what we should do for the finale on Friday evening. We also tried to answer the question: "What really happened to Brian O'Donnell?"! We really came up with some good ideas. After that we were all out of workshop hours but still had to spend quite a while writing our stories and later typing them.

Malin Näsholm

Singing Workshop

We went over to Cottage 4 where the music workshop people were meeting. We were introduced to a Scottish song "Cock of the North" and we rehearsed it with the music group which included two young Irish women who played the tin whistle and a small accordion. After an hour we had it down pat. We then proceeded to practise "Country Roads" again, this time with musical instruments to support our voices.

After that we went back to our own cottage and practised our a capella songs some more.

Singing is beginning to have an effect on us: you can hear singing in the shower!


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Dr. Elmar-Laurent Borgmann
Rhein-Ahr-Campus, FH-Koblenz
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