Friday, October 15, 2010

The Cliffs of Moher

I recently went to see the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland with a few friends. They're towering cliffs that jut straight from the sea in the southeast corner of the country, and it's been turned into a bit of a tourist trap with entrance fees, a store called 'The Gifts of Moher,' and large handrails that keep you from getting too close to the edge. Once you reach the end of the handrails, you encounter a small fence, and beyond it you can see several people walking along next to the cliff. It's no trouble to see how they got out -- there's a massive hole in the fence. All you need to do is duck your head and walk through. I think the proprietors of the Cliffs let people go out there and leave the fence up so they can escape liability issues, and I thought it a bit sad that touristy spots in the States don't do the same thing. Then I considered the ropes blocking 'Out of Bounds' places in Midwestern ski resorts. Those are pretty much exactly the same as the busted-down gate at the Cliffs.

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