Home Again

It's funny to think that John poo-pooed a trip to Ireland for so many years. I'm not quite sure why, since he always emphasizes the "Irish" majority (3/4) of his Irish-German roots. Perhaps he knew that once he visited, he'd want to return, soon. And so it is.

We both loved this trip. The people, the gorgeous countryside, the sea. And the villages and larger towns, which hummed with vibrancy. It's actually a great thing that the sun doesn't shine as much as we seem to need these days, or we would seriously be thinking of moving. We lucked out with the weather, except for our first day in Donegal, when the wind blew a gale. Only a few spits and spots after that.

Driving felt easier than in England and Scotland, perhaps because they painted a white line down the middle of all but the tiniest roads...psychological comfort, I suppose.

We visited so many places, but I think my initial list of favorites include:
  1. Our walks. The breezy and chilly trek out to the castle at Glenveagh National Park in Donegal. Stark lands until you reach the castle's grounds. Then it was like entering a different world behind those stone walls. The gardens were lovely. Our purely serendipitous walk around the Marconi exhibit near Clifden, in Connemara. Gorgeous day, sweeping views.
  2. The Hugh Lane Museum, in Dublin. Who knew I'd be so transfixed by Asian books, scrolls, and drawing. Unbelievable, and so much more moving that the Book of Kells. Partially, I suppose, because we could actually stop and take in the exhibits; we weren't herded like sheep.
  3. The Burren. The entire region was magical. And harsh--blanketed in stone. But there was something about the land, fields of stone, and sky that transfixed.
  4. Felicity's flat. We loved having a "home" to return to each evening, and a neighborhood for shopping, pubs, and restaurants.
We're already talking about going back, even though our travel list is filled with other destinations. And yes, we'll golf next time.


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