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  • Betty Girardeau

The Emerald Isle

In the fall of 2016 my daughter was sent by her company to work at the Dublin, Ireland office for a month. I suggested to her that she ask for a week off at the completion of that month and I would join her so we could tour Ireland together. We rented a car, which I gladly let her drive, and we planned a pretty full itinerary that allowed us to cover major portions of the country, and one day in Northern Ireland as well. I could easily have selected way more than one picture to share today from that week, some of which are pretty iconic Irish ones, but this is one of my favorites. It was taken on the Dingle peninsula a bit north of the Cliffs of Moher, where we intentionally did not go in order to avoid tourist crowds. We encountered very few people at all the morning I took this picture. Ireland is an incredibly beautiful country and, if you know anything of its history, you know that its people are hearty stock. This image of the east coast of Ireland shows both its soft beauty and almost unbelievable ruggedness. This particular area, too, is where the Irish began the movement to tenaciously hold onto the Irish language (described by the EU as the Celtic language of Ireland). It is a beautiful language that has a musical quality to it accompanied by some "rough" edges, a language not unlike the topography of the country itself. They say the language is dying a slow death. I hope that it never becomes lost and forgotten. I have Scotch-Irish blood coursing through my veins. I loved Ireland. I felt very much at home there. The young show so much energy and are proud of overcoming so much of their history as a state subordinate to the English. When I was growing up my Mother discouraged me wearing green on St. Patrick's Day because, we came for the Scots who had migrated to Ireland before coming to America. Therefore, we should wear orange. But I admire the Irish, and I am equally proud to wear orange and green on St. Patrick's Day.

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