In 2007 we went to Ireland. Had an incredibly adventurous trip. If I lived there I could not possibly see all of the things that I need to see there. And I would never have enough words to send back to everyone. But I sure like going and trying to see it all and to write back about it.
From a day in November 2007 I wrote a letter to a few family and friends. The following is an excerpt. I am copying to here as I wrote it. So pardon the horrible punctuation and other errors. I was in Ireland and writing fast so I could go back out in to Ireland.
“so today it is windy and blustery. rain, sun, wind. and happy thanksgiving to you all! i would stop at subway and get a turkey wrap as its the only turkey i have seen here but i fear the repercussions. ;o)
we have been out sight seeing and checking out the round towers, castles and abbeys. and being out on a blustery day like this you get pretty chilled. not to mention the cow dung stuck to your shoes as you walk through the cow fields to get to the fairy raths and round towers and such. so you find places to sit and have a pot of tea. i dont know how many pots of tea we’ve had, not enough i tell you. america needs to do more tea. i am advocating that. so anyway the coolest place we found today was a place run by an old order of monks. i mean old. they were so nice. the tea was great. floor was flagstone, just like our cottage. OH REMIND ME TO TELL YOU OF THE GHOST IN OUR COTTAGE anyway…. we are enjoying our cuppa and trying to listen to the monks. well, we could hear them alright, we just couldnt understand them. remember, they are irish trying to speak english. i think we should speak irish when we come here. they were very nice, even had the very old fashioned true to monk fashion that is, hair cut. i think its called a cowl???? the robes were old looking too. they offered us food, i wish we had said yes but we declined. spent about half an hour in there. it was lit by candles. everywhere. so bright enough but full of atmosphere and turf fires!! thank God it was chilly out! the monks kind of walk you to the door. very chattery considering they were monks. then we stepped out in to that very cold wind and wait til you see the picture we took after we left! when we turned around to tell them good bye THERE WAS NOTHING BUT RUINS! “
I share this with you because I love this story. It was a real place. The abbey, though in ruins, was still fabulous. It still had rooms and second and third floors we could go on. We walked the path the monks walked saying their evening prayers. The place they ate was still intact. It was just incredible to stand there and put yourself in their shoes, did they have shoes? From about four hundred years ago. It was easy to imagine. It was easy to feel it.
I thought it was fun to go rumbling around all of the ruins and hills and stores and bakeries. It was a great time. Something made me want to add something to my daily email back to family and friends. So I put the monks in there as best I could to make everyone feel what I had experienced.
But the best part of this story is my aunt. Don’t worry “aunt” I won’t call you out in front of everyone! Who still says to me every time she sees me “I THOUGHT IT WAS TRUE! I’VE BEEN TELLING EVERYONE THIS REALLY HAPPENED!” The best part being, I wanted her, and everyone else, to believe. To feel it. She did. She got it. This makes me feel good.
It did happen.
And the blurp about Subway? I wrote in an earlier email that they had Subway and we had stopped in for a wrap. I caught quite a bit of grief from the Americans for going to Subway. Mind you, it was still an Ireland Subway, so it was different. Can you get corn in your wrap here? No. For that matter you can’t even get a wrap anymore. Grrrr. But that’s another blog.