St. Patrick’s Day Contest Entry: Life-Long Learner

In Win A Trip to Ireland by TonyLeave a Comment

My name is Ashley, and I am 25% Irish! Thank you!. Oh, 500 words, that’s right…well then. Let’s dig deeper. My Great Uncle passed away about 5 years ago. His name was Raymond Houghton, and he, along with my Grandfather, Herbert (who passed away 7 years ago), was 100% Irish. I am a math teacher, and when my Uncle found out, he was overjoyed. Why? Because he was a Professor. Not only was he a Professor at Rhode Island College, but also taught in Dublin, Ireland. Raymond Houghton was an extraordinary man dedicated to education. He taught at Trinity College. He also helped found and served as director of the Free University of Ireland.

I would love to visit Ireland in honor of my Uncle’s memory. I would like to visit the colleges at which he taught, and experience the homeland he and my grandfather both loved. They both passed away before I could grow up enough to ask the “good” questions before I was grown and mature enough to be curious about my family history and what led to today. To me, visiting Ireland would be like adding a piece to the puzzle of who I am. Ireland is a beautiful country I would love and appreciate the opportunity to learn more about.

My reasons for wanting to visit Ireland start with my family, but do not end there. I have always been obsessed with European History. I have taken classes, researched information, and read many historical novels. I think that most Americans do not realize how much of a baby our country is compared to the long, long pasts of countries like Ireland, Scotland, France and England. I have a fascination for the architecture of the building, the culture, and nature. I love exploring places that have defied time and still exist if you have the gall to go and seek it out. I love castles and thousand-year-old trees. I am betting Ireland is better and has more to tell than I can even begin to imagine. I would love the opportunity to see a glimpse into the wonder that is Ireland.

If given the opportunity to visit Ireland, frankly, I would be down to visit anywhere the trip was gracious enough to let me! However, the places in Ireland that draw me to the country include obvious places such as the castles and cathedrals. The other places that I am interested in seeing are sites such as the Old Jameson Distillery, the Chester Beatty Library, the National Botanic Gardens, the Gaols, the English Market, The Antrim Coast, Barren, and the Blueway. Seeing any of the amazing destinations would be an unforgettable experience. I am an adventurer who loves to go down the side streets. I like to walk around and discover the less traveled road. I want to sit in a local cafe or pub and ask the regulars what they like to do and then experience those things. I don’t want just the overview, I want the details. Thank you for considering me for this opportunity.


Life is ever-changing, and everyone deserves a time to slow down and enjoy the small things. Here at Authentic Ireland, we are dedicated to providing you a stress-free vacaton, so you can enjoy the beauty of Ireland through authentic experiences. For many, the thought of Ireland brings visions of Ireland Castles, for other’s its delectable seafood, and for most it’s a green land full of great people.

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