West Ireland

14 Oct

Dublin was just beginning to feel stuffy, smoky and stressful. Our trip to West Ireland was exactly what I needed to relax. The instant I saw that first cow my shoulders loosened up. I don’t know if we took a scenic route, but the fields I saw from the bus were strikingly breathtaking. It was exactly what I imagined Ireland would be like before I arrived in early September.

Inis Mor, the biggest of the Aran Islands, was unquestionably my favorite part of the trip. Looking upon the island from atop the cliffs made it hard to believe that the island is less than ten miles in length.  Prior to climbing our way to the peak, we were escorted to a starting walking point by vans. When I asked the driver what they did for fun, he replied, “get drunk”. The thought of having no entertainment – no Internet, cable television or theatre – made me ponder what growing up on Inis Mor would be like. What would it be like being the only one in my grade? What would it be like to have so few people my age around me that I have to be friends with the one’s who are? I feel like choice is more limited on Inis Mor than it is in America and Dublin.

The amount of time it must’ve taken to get all the sand over to Inis Mor to make the land fertile is unimaginable. It was a truly unique place in that regard (at least in my mind). There were no trees. None. I know this fact seems unimportant, but it really caught my attention and made the island rather eerie. The lack of people – only about 850 – made the island eerie, as well. I don’t mean eerie in a negative way, only it is so different from what I’ve been accustom to in Dublin.

We were given a quiz on the ride back from the Cliffs of Moher, which we hardly got to see due to the fog. Prior to the quiz we sang a lovely song called “The Fields of Athenry.” It was a painful song about the struggles of the Potato Famine. The song was written after the Potato Famine was over. Whether you view the song as a beautiful Irish ballad or a rebel song, it is enjoyable nonetheless. You can check out the song by clicking on the link below.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NLZRWNdGCUc

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