Good-bye to the fair folks of Ireland; the young, the old, the wise and the beautiful and precious people who walk the land, slowly and quickly through the streets of the cities and towns. It is with sadness that I depart from these shores, but I will return. In this photo (couple combined) you see the elderly, the young and the wee new borns walking along the streets of the City of Cork. You see the signage that tells you you are in Ireland…Guinness…the drink of the Irish. It reminds me of my grandfather when he was alive and I but a wee lass. He’d arrive home from his days at sea fishing, and Grandma Dot would greet him at the door with his pint of stout; what I thought was a glass of molasses. Guinness, stout, port; fish, sheep and rocky shores. So much like Cape Breton; just a grander scale, but it’s almost as if the Lord decided that Canada needed to have a piece of Ireland for the emigrated folks to remember their home. Now I can truly say that where I was born is very much like Ireland – including of course the forever rain and Cape Breton mist and fog; very much indeed.
Before even arriving in Ireland I was introduced to the kindness and openness of the people when a woman I met through an internet search, began voluntarily feeding me information about my family, where they would have lived, some of the neighbours and folks living here now who might have more information and be able to help me. That woman, Mary
(after me own dear departed mother Mary) continued to send me e-mails with tidbits of information.
The openness and friendliness reminded me very much of my youthful summers at our house on Cape Breton Island. We didn’t live in fear of our neighbours or the stranger who might drive down our road late at night. We lived in openness; leaving the tea pot on the stove when we’d go out shopping, just in case someone like Mary dropped by whilst we were out. She could sit a spell and have a cuppa waiting in case we showed up soon. If not, she’d finish her tea and be on her way. Those are the memories I have until about age 13, and those memories were rekindled here in Ireland, the land of my forefathers.
So I say fare thee well Ireland, for now; my spirit will visit often. For now I must take flight and cross the big pond (as my relatives in Cape Breton used to call the Atlantic Ocean) to the other side….fare thee well.