The Day The Elephants Came To Ireland!

Elephants are not synonymous with Ireland,
but I’d like to tell you,
the true story of,
“The Day they visited a farm in West Cork”.

Every year we go on our holidays,
to a tiny village in West Cork,
called Allihies.
A similar spot cannot be found anywhere in the world.

It is like a place that time forgot.resizedimage
Children can run wild,
up mountains and through fields.
There are two pubs,
who have traditional music and singing most nights.
Children are welcomed,
and visiting gardai,(police)
are quickly spotted driving through the gap in the mountain,
so licensing laws are not always adhered to!


I love Allihies,
and every year it recharges my batteries.
I have always thought,
that my children will one day hopefully travel the world.
Before that I want them to know their own country.

However it is not a holiday,
my children would be proud to boast of,
to their peers.
In fact last year,
my youngest pretended we went to,
Disneyland Paris!

However a couple of years ago,
we got to experience something,
very few others get to do.
We got to “join the circus”.
In a very unorthodox way.

Myself, and two of my children,
were driving from Allihies to Eyeries.
The road to Eyeries,
is a long, twisty narrow one,
through the mountains.

As we went over one of the mountains,Brandon_Mountain_opt
we saw the circus traveling in front of us.
Being almost local, after so many years visiting,
I knew they were on the wrong road.
No way was this road suitable,
for the two huge trucks they had,
to hold their three elephants!

Having negotiated the tiny road,
they reached the bottom of the mountain.
There they were faced with a 90′ bend.
In front of them was a large whitewashed wall,
and directly opposite the wall, was a farmhouse.
The road between the two,
would just fit their truck.
But no way could the truck make a 90′ turn.

There was nowhere for them to go.
They could not turn back,
nor could they reverse back up the mountain.

So what did they do?
Out came the Elephants.
Over the course of two hours,
they used the elephants,
to lift the back of the truck,
inches at a time,
using their trunks!
They would then drive the trucks forward a tiny bit,
and once again get the elephants to lift the back up.
Inch by inch, they eventually got the two trucks,
around the bend.

We could not turn back or go forward.small__2168204314
So over the two hours,
we got to “join the circus”.
My two children met the circus children,
and sat on the farm gates,
watching the elephants work.
As time went on,
the elephants were rested in the field,
with our children playing beside them.

In all that time no other car joined us.
The farmer was not at home,
We were the only witnesses.
That September when our children returned to school,
they had a proud tale to tell.

Last year whilst in the pub in Allihies one night,
a dispute arose between two locals,
about the authenticity of this event.
One was adamant it was an urban myth.
I was only too delighted,
to set the record straight,
and to tell the true tale of
“the day the elephants came to a farm in West Cork!”

photo by Kman999 on Flickr

photo by  Nigel Cox
photo credit: Arno Meintjes Wildlife via photopin cc

16 thoughts on “The Day The Elephants Came To Ireland!

  1. Ha, West Cork! Love it. That’s a great story! God bless reality, it’s always so much better than fiction. And that country of yours looks beautiful. I hope the wife and I can visit it someday. Getting shitfaced in Ireland is now on my bucket list. It’s the only thing on it, in fact, as I’ve just made it up. Thanks!

    1. And that is the only thing anyone needs on a bucket list! I think failte ireland should start paying me! Next Irish lesson, failte is irish for “welcome”,

  2. You really have the most interesting stories to tell! Imagine getting stuck behind a circus, with elephants helping the truck make a turn… I don’t think anyone can make this up!

  3. Wow you won’t believe this! I was also one of the few to experience this. I’ll never forget it to my dying day! I tell anyone the story I can that will listen 😂.
    I think I was about 15-16 at the time. I’m now 26. As I write this I’m sitting at Ballydonegan beach in the car while it rains outside.
    It’s funny your version of events as they unfolded. Mine were slightly different as we must have arrived just after the truck got stuck.
    So myself & Dad has gotten up early to go fishing. Our family would too spend every summer in Allihies & I happened to get engaged down here on Ballydonegan beach in feb 2019.
    Anyway this particular fishing spot is my Dads favourite. Past the split in the road where the red house is and the shed on the opposite side.
    We had just driven over the mountain from Allihies via Eyeries Road when we noticed a big truck at the bend. We thought it was broken down. Seemingly not! 😂
    So we decided to park the car at the top of the mountain and walk down to the fishing spot.
    We knew we wouldn’t make it past the truck.
    As we were walking down the circus people were letting our their elephants into the field beside the red house.
    We had to walk into the field to get to our fishing spot & I’ll never forget myself & my Dad walking right beside these elephants. I was in absolute shock! It was just incredible.
    I never got to see the elephants lift the truck 😢 but it was amazing to read your version & to hear it from a different perspective!
    This story certainly was not a myth 😂 I find it so funny some locals didn’t believe it!
    Thanks so much for sharing this.
    We only happened to be talking about it the other day & my brother googled it & came across your blog!

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