On a recent driving trip around Ireland, we passed through Lisdoonvarna, population 800, the site of the photo featured on this week's Sepia Saturday. Banners announcinhg "Matchmaking" events were being removed from the streets. Later we read that Lisdoonvarna hosts the world's largest match making festival; as many as 40,000 people from all around the world descend on the place looking for love. Matchmaking is one of Ireland's oldest traditions and for the last couple of hundred years, a good deal of it has taken place in Lisdoonvarna during September and early October.
Here's a link to a video about the event and an interview with one of the famous matchmakers, the third generation of his family in the business. He's made 3000 matches and claims if you lay both hands on his magic book, you'll be in love within 6 months.
Match Maker Ireland
Stretching my imagination to the absolute limit (I can hear it creaking), perhaps there's a link between Lisdoonvarna's matchmaking activities and our photo. Could this disgruntled old lady be a match maker and could these people be looking for love?
On second thought, setting aside all far-fetched romantic notions, I think this grumpy looking woman is renting out the clothes piled in a heap behind her. The hapless group of men and woman could be bird watchers (two of them are holding something - binoculars or martinis?) dumped out here for the day only to find themselves totally unprepared for the muddy weather. Instead of being a helpless old woman on the verge of eviction, is she an opportunistic entrepreneur ignoring their pleas for help (the turned face) and raising the price of the clothing rental as the velocity of the rain increases?
For more ideas about this very strange encounter, grab your bumbershoot and visit