Ireland. There’s No Place Like Home.

This morning’s exercise was to write about a place I love. I visited Ireland for the first time in the winter of 1978. I was forever changed by that introduction to my ancestral home.

I felt “it” the moment I debarked Aer Lingus. It was not a physical sensation but an inexplicable knowing. A soft internal whisper: This is home. You belong here.

These silent words hummed throughout my four-week visit to the lush and barren island. Ancient ruins and stone monoliths were a landscape of ancestral tethers. Turbulent, thrashing weather creaked my bones until the sun emerged to radiate its warmth, and the sky grinned its upside-down multicolored smile from ear to ear.

So many magical memories. The feral cry reverberating in the Fairy’s Glade near Blarney Castle. That eerie vision of a wooden ship sailing away from the Cobh coast toward the misty horizon of hope and freedom. Singalongs in the Dublin pub accompanied by my first taste of good beer. Invisible fairies impishly vying for my attention, insisting I acknowledge their playful antics.

I was enraptured, enthralled, utterly in love, and forever changed by the lure of these family trees and Celtic culture.

The whisper echoes still: There’s no place like home.

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