There are two things of which you can be certain in Ireland: rain and poetry. My little nook of Irish paradise is in Castletownshend, West Cork, an hour and a half west of Cork airport (or Corcaigh in Irish). It’s a tiny fishing village and it’s been my holiday home for the last 28 years….
Mykonos may be alluring, Ibiza tantalizing, and St Tropez may have the ultimate swagger, but the Algarve in Portugal is my port of call for dreamy, charming and authentic. And the light: at sunrise, it’s luminescent with shades of cotton candy and bluebells; at sunset, it dissolves listlessly into a canvas of tangerine and ink….
My Italian memory starts with a train journey from Sorrento to Pompeii at the age of eight. It was a packed and rickety train, winding its agitated way from Sorrento, as hot as a Neoplitan pizza oven. A short, stout and rather ancient-looking Italian man decided to pinch my mother, Shelley, on her jean-clad posterior….