A Farewell letter.

Dear Ireland, it is time to say goodbye, to finally admit I have left you.
Truthfully, I have been avoiding this post. I generally tactfully dodge goodbyes with an innocent "oh no, I'll see you before I leave", and I am certainly not ready for this one. After almost an entire month back in Canada the majority of my sentences still begin "did you know that in Ireland..." Last evening's family supper ended with the entire table huddled around an Iphone watching Irish Comedian clips. Please know that you are missed.
You see, I just cannot let go to your big damp island filled with endless shades of green and hands down the friendliest people with a serious love of laughter. There are no photos that capture that infectious attitude and welcoming nature.
It still feels like just yesterday the spontaneous decision to move to Ireland was made. One Skype conversation with two persistent friends later, and I found myself booking a flight with zero idea of what life on the Emerald Isle consisted of. Peer pressure at its finest. My ignorance of the Irish history was soon made evident, my jaw constantly hitting the floor - seriously Belfast, who knew.
The three short months on your island were surreal. I am beyond grateful for the chance to explore it all. From our cozy Dublin apartment, the carpeted hills, and the dramatic West coast cliffs. The painted sheep speckled across every farm, the love for high-intensity sports - pubs filled with every rugby, hurling, or football match, the salty Howth air and incredible fresh fish, Belfast's looming display of live history, and the perfect rip in the relaxed surf town of Donegal, there was so much to take in. Calm beauty and wild adventure on every road, train, or bus trip.
And man Ireland, did we have fun. I dedicated a post to celebrating the randomness that is Ireland, which leads to some great adventures and constant laughter. I can't be the first to tell you that some things on the great big island are a bit different. F, S and I constantly exchanged looks of confusion, taking about a month to adjust to the infectious laid back attitude and way of life. Along the way I tried to pinpoint these differences, making a list of things that I couldn't imagine giving up, and those that consistently led to a face palm...

Will miss

Won’t miss
- that accent
- live music everywhere  
- fish and chips
- fresh fresh fresh cheap delicious fresh fish (mussels, scallops, and clams oh my!)
- my deer friends in Phoenix Park
- Fallon & Byrne (saved expat lives with quinoa and black beans).
- my visitors
- running across the street like a lunatic
- the permanent scent of fresh cut grass
- real Guinness
- perpetually lost in translation while speaking english (dear professor, i thought 'call on me' meant phone you, not come to your office.)
- running across the street like a lunatic
- a kitchen stocked with only one non-stick pan and two forks
- cheap umbrellas
- LIBRARY COP. (There was coffee in our mugs everyday, take that).

Despite any confusion we might have initially encountered, Dublin, you were the perfect home for F and I. Your cold rainy nights had us bonding over documentaries, 'modeling' long underwear, mastering slippery cobblestone streets, and truly appreciating every moment of sunshine. That blue filthy carpet, tiny kitchen, animated convict neighbor, old skeleton key, and bedroom shower... are all missed. 

You should hear us blubbering on and on about you in Sask. 
Our friends are annoyed.
And Ireland, your reputation brought the visitor I had been waiting for, saving a coast for our eager exploration. How lucky we were to take in those clear waters and jagged cliffs; an absolute sight, speaking directly to the pride of the Irish. L's patience tested as I hugged each corner on your narrow Ring of Kerry roads. A few rental-car scratches later, you allowed him to live out his race-car fantasy on the windy traverse; one happy boy.

You drew me in with your casual street wear, cozy pubs, constant comedy, and friendly people. They are the first thing I noticed, and what I will miss the most. The constant 'thank ya luv, oh you're grand,' doors held open, exchange of pleasantries, and conversations among complete strangers. The Irish were never too busy for a quick chat or exchange of (for the most part) gentle one-liners. No wonder they say there are only two kinds of people in the world; the Irish and those who wish they were. I've never been more proud to have Irish roots.

And just like that, it's over. I'll keep your reputation alive with every recommendation that my friends and family will allow. Thank you and farewell.


1 comment:

  1. What an amazing post Chels! I've always wanted to spend time in Ireland and you've only made this desire in me grow to almost bursting. What an incredible experience for you. I hope you get to go back very soon! (Though we in Canada are oh so happy to have you back :))


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