In April of 2017, my family and I embarked on a journey to visit my brother who was studying abroad in Ireland. After our plane landed, my brother greeted us between the green walls of the Dublin Airport. Our cab driver’s thick Gaelic accent warmed my ears as he took us to our home for the week on perhaps the most famous street in Ireland: Grafton Street. Its bricks were worn by the steps of centuries of Dubliners (now that I think about it, possibly my ancestors) that at one point were passing through to board a ship that would bring them to a new beginning in the country that I call home today. The narrow staircase that led up to our apartment was fragrant from the fresh lavender of the soap shop below. A look out the window led my eyes to the famous Trinity College that had produced some of the biggest names in writing and philosophy of all of Ireland’s history. I’m not sure exactly what, but something about 116 Grafton Street felt like home to me. I hadn’t seen even a fraction of Ireland and yet I felt overwhelmingly fulfilled as I sat at the window examining the city as the rest of my family stood behind me doing the same.
I couldn’t wait for all the cliffs and the causeways we’d see, along with the wicked winds and roaring rainfalls my brother had warned of, but I was truly most excited to see Dublin. Its historical importance in Ireland’s history, along with my family’s ancestry intrigued and excited me. My brother guided us through the streets of Dublin after we had unpacked our things past what seemed like endless pubs and sweater shops. I remember that we stopped in one pub to hear a band that was playing, lead by a woman playing the fiddle and singing. The whole room had this cheerful feeling as locals danced around to the classic folk-like music. I fell deeper and deeper in love with the city of Dublin each time I got to experience a new aspect of it.
The lively nights spent in Dublin would be followed by a solid six hours of sleep before my family and I would wake up each morning to commence a new journey to a new destination in Ireland. Out of all of our day trips, the most memorable one was our first trip, which was to Guinness Lake. Guinness Lake got its name due to its uncanny resemblance to a glass of Guinness beer, Ireland’s most famous drink. The lake is a dark brown color and at its right side forms a foam-like substance. Beyond the lake is a view of the Wicklow Mountains that carries on as far as the eye can see. The endless shades of green filled my eyes as I surveyed the breath-taking landscape. Never had I been so in awe.
Throughout the rest of my week in Ireland, each new view I saw, plate of food I devoured, band I listened to, and museum I explored all would come together to complete what I still call the best week of my life. I want to end this by saying thank you to Ireland. Thank you for the endless amount of experiences that I’ll never forget. Thank you for providing me with a new sense of the lifestyle that my ancestors lived years ago. Thank you for providing me with a sense of community and self-fulfillment that I had never felt before. Thank you.
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