When I threw open my blinds this morning, I saw fog blanketing the Cashel countryside. This was exactly what I had been hoping for. I wanted to revisit Hore Abbey and capture it in fog, so I wasted no time getting ready and driving over there. Lucky for me, there was no one on the road or at the crumbling abbey; I had it all to myself – a photographers dream!
I had a particular shot in mind, and it required hiking out into a cow pasture. As I sloshed further out into the marshy field, I had the faintest idea that I may have made a bad choice. I tried to stay on the most solid-looking pieces of turf but soon realized I was in big, muddy trouble. And then it happened…My right foot sunk deep into a slurping pool of something I can only assume came from the back-end of a cow. Muddy hell!
Of course, I couldn’t let a little bog juice spoil my fun. Even though my shoes and pant legs, up to my knees, were soaked, I carried on and got my shot. Photographers will understand – certain sacrifices must be made in the name of composition.
I love how Irish people pronounce “Ireland”. They say her name like that of a new lover with whom they have just parted ways, wistfully enchanted, possessed by a fondness that can never be fully realized. I have caught myself saying it that way too – love and loss rolled into three syllables. Ireland.
Who couldn’t help falling in love with her?
She is magic, an enchantress who sings of adventure and romance from her Celtic shores. She lures you in with her bittersweet song and haunts you long after she tosses you back to sea. Ireland.
She is cold reality, forcing you to swim back against the salty currents, wounded, just to get another burning glimpse. Ireland.
She makes her peace with you – once you let go of your own agenda and just love her. She opens up a colorful promise, like a rainbow painted across a steal-blue sky, sweet hope against heavy sorrow. She plucks you from the desolate beach of disappointment and offers a gift. Ireland.
Ireland’s gift to me is a story,”Spirited Away”. She gave me the time and space to discover that I am a writer, and unlike the fickleness of romantic love, writing is a passion that can’t be taken away from me. So I have returned to the Emerald Isle a third time to do just that – write. Who knows, maybe I’ll finish my first book while I’m here?