Getting out of the city and into the Irish countryside is always a magical experience. My best friend, Juliette, brought me to her home town and it truly was the most amazing day of my trip thus far. From hopping around countries and staying in unfamiliar places to staying in a warm home with good company, it was such a lovely change. Unplugging for the day and stepping away from my devices was the perfect reset button I needed and the Irish country air does wonders for the soul.
The vast blue skies were bathing us in sunshine as we walked through the quiet winding back roads and the sounds of birds chirping made me smile from ear to ear. It honestly didn’t feel real. All I needed was a gorgeous Irish lad to show up out of nowhere and show us the way home (like in PS I Love You, duh
Spending quality time with Juliette and her family was so fabulous and we had such a wonderful time talking about life and love and everything in between. We prepared a salmon and sweet potato dinner while listening to Sinatra (our favorite) and drinking our evening cocktails. The fire was burning and kept us nice and toasty, and you could feel the love in the air.
After dinner, some family friends came over, and what we thought would just be 30 minutes of catching up and saying hello turned into 2 or 3 hours of laughter, more drinking, and big life conversations. We covered a number of topics including: the Irish culture as a whole, marriage, children, love, the different dialects of Ireland’s regions (I had fun practicing those with them), music genres and artists (a long conversation about Bono from U2), and so much more. It sort of reminded me of the scene in Leap Year (if you haven’t seen it go stream it on Netflix now) where a lovely Irish couple has welcomed travelers into their home and they’re all drinking around the table laughing and telling stories. I am so thankful to have such genuinely kind and loving people in my life, I truly do consider them my little Irish family.
The evening was winding down and I wanted to take in the countryside once more before going to bed. I stepped outside and looked up at the beautiful night sky and could see all of the stars. Living in New York City means that sky scrapers and polluted air cover any signs of stars in the sky so whenever I get out of metropolitan areas I always make sure to look up and take it all in. It makes me feel so small and it is so humbling. In those moments when I observe all of the beauty above me, I realize that sweating the small stuff is irrelevant and unnecessary because in the grand scheme of things we are just these tiny little beings in this massive and intricate universe. While looking up at the sky I reflected on all of the amazing adventures these past two and a half weeks have brought me, on everything I have experienced and accomplished on my own, and I felt a visceral and palpable feeling of love and gratitude.
I did it.