What I Love about Ireland

While I’m certainly not a huge St. Patrick’s Day person in terms of getting all decked out in green and wearing shamrock, I find myself being more and more aware of my Irish identity as March 17th looms.

Here are the things that I love most about this native country of mine:

1. The fact that Ireland is an island with miles and miles of glorious and diverse coastline.

2. The accent, or should I say, the range of Irish accents and the way I only hear my own Irish accent when I’m not in Ireland!

3. The long and ongoing tradition of the arts, and especially poetry, through names like W.B. Yeats, Patrick Kavanagh, Seamus Heaney, Brendan Kennelly, Paul Durcan …..

4. The Irish passion for sport … hurling, horse-racing, rugby, soccer, athletics, boxing…

5. Travelling along back roads through the countryside soaking up the colour and the nods of familiar strangers.

6. The buildings ~ from iconic places like Trinity College, Dublin to tiny thatched cottages with red doors out in the middle of nowhere.

7. The incredible diversity of Ireland’s people ~ layered with an intriguing complexity, warmth and quick wit.

About socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and I love to write both non-fiction and poetry.
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18 Responses to What I Love about Ireland

  1. Billie says:

    Absolutely love it Jean! And I agree with you on every point… not a big Paddy’s Day fan myself, but in love with everything (well… almost everything :)) Irish otherwise :D

  2. Billie says:

    PS: Love the new theme on your blog, breathes Irish beaches :D

    • socialbridge says:

      Interesting, David. I thought long and hard about it but I’m not sure one can generalise but clearly you feel one can?

      • I didn’t feel it to be a generalisation, to be honest. I thought long and hard about how many things I loved about my 13 years in Ireland – Dublin, Carlingford, Galway, Cork, Kinsale, Connemara, Kilkenny, not to mention all the other places. Art, poetry, theatre, music. My career. But ultimately, the reason I stayed all of those years was because of my friends.

        • socialbridge says:

          David, thanks for this considered response. (I would have to add Co. Waterford, Co. Clare and Co. Louth to your list of places!) As for the ‘people’ issue, I have the highest regard for Irish people, lest I seem to be suggesting otherwise, but my hesitation comes because of all the wonderful people I know from other places too. Perhaps I’m too ensconced in Ireland to be able to see the broader picture here.

  3. You make me want to visit the land of my ancestors, Jean. Lovely post. Speaking of which, I have not been receiving notifications of your posts, so I shall have to check my settings.

  4. amar says:

    Lovely words :) I wanted to travel this green part of the world for a long. I’m on plan to explore somewhere around UK- Europe..

    Would like to know weather of this place in April to do road trip around coast and countryside’s !!!

    • socialbridge says:

      Hi Amar, thanks very much for writing and I hope you come to Ireland while exploring Europe. I absolutely agree with Roy (below) in what he said about the Irish weather in April. It’s a great month to visit Ireland!

  5. Roy McCarthy says:

    No arguments from me Jean, and I could add many more positive attributes. There are negative aspects too but they would never outweigh the positives. To amar ^^^ April is probably the very best time to see Ireland, after the ravages of winter but before the summer tourists drift in and crowd the popular spots. It can rain at any time though so be prepared.

    • socialbridge says:

      Roy, thanks for writing and for your response to Amar. My computer was acting up dreadfully when his comment came in.
      Oh yes, lots more positives and definitely some negatives but I agree that the positives far out-weigh the negatives.

  6. Lovely post, Jean, and it looks like there is much to love about Ireland! I’ve never been there, as you know, but I have a friend who was born in Dublin and she’s had relatives visit here and I love their accents. Although we’re not Irish, I still make corned beef and cabbage on St. Patrick’s Day and we manage to wear green, if we don’t forget! Who wants to be pinched? :) I hope you’re having a great weekend! xx

    • socialbridge says:

      Hi Lauren, I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Your reference to ‘pinching’ made me smile as the first I heard of it was from an American many moons ago!

      • Oh, how funny about the pinching…it’s so easy to assume everyone’s heard of these little traditions, but it depends on the country and culture…

        • socialbridge says:

          Yeah, it seems to be very well known, especially in the US, but somehow isn’t part of the St. Patrick’s Day that I’ve shared in many places around Ireland. No doubt, it IS part of some Irish people’s experiences here, though!

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