Recently, I spent a long overdue weekend tracing my ancestry back six generations on my father’s side. Our Irish roots were something he expressed great pride in, but he didn’t have many details about our lineage prior to his grandparents immigrating to the states in the early 1900’s. What I discovered about our ancestors, from Galway to Wicklow, made me feel drawn to visit your beautiful country as soon as possible.
I grew up in Massachusetts, not too far from where our family first settled on U.S. soil. I was raised with a love of Celtic and folk music. I fondly remember listening to the Irish Rovers, and memorizing the lyrics to The Unicorn and Black Velvet Band, two of my favorite songs. My dad had the most charismatic presence, and his enthusiasm for life was infectious. We talked about our desire to travel to Ireland together and to have the opportunity to immerse ourselves in the country from which we came. When I got the opportunity to travel abroad on my own in 2011, I narrowed my choices down to Ireland and New Zealand. In the end, I chose New Zealand, because I honestly couldn’t imagine going to Ireland without my Dad. I wanted to save that trip for us to do together.
Unfortunately, we didn’t get that opportunity, since he passed away unexpectedly in 2013. For the first year or two after his passing, I still couldn’t see myself going to Ireland on my own. But recently, I’ve had a change of heart. I’ve felt drawn to Ireland lately, with visions of its lush green scenery, and a number of serendipitous experiences that keep bringing Ireland to the center of my attention. Stumbling across this website, and the contest I’m entering here is just one of those occurrences. Though I do not have strong religious convictions, I do strongly believe that my dad is with me in spirit, and truth be told, I don’t believe it’s out of the realm of possibility that he may be playing a hand in planting these thoughts of Ireland in my head lately. Maybe he’s telling me that we still have the opportunity to go together.
If that’s the case, I’m ready. I’m ready to go on another adventure. I’m ready to stand at the edge of the cliffs, staring out at the vast ocean, and feel the wind envelop my body. I’m ready to find a cozy nook in an old tavern and listen to the live Celtic and folk music that makes my heart feel lighter. I’m ready to frolic through the fields and forests of green, like the woodland fairy I pretend to be. I’m ready to explore the history of castles and cathedrals, and the more modest history of my own ancestors and the land that birthed them. I want to do all of these things with my dad by my side, with his gentle guiding presence with me in spirit as we set out on the adventure we planned when I was just a little girl.
Beleive it or not, you don’t need the luck of the Irish to Travel to Ireland, even if travel isn’t your forte. We offer a huge range of Guided Ireland Tours, Cruises, and even fully Chauffeured Trips for a luxury-type getaway.