Posted by Kelly Timlin on November 14, 2003 at 19:44:14:
I think one of the biggest (and the most pleasing) surprises in my life was to see how different The Republic of Ireland is to what I had always been told.
We were in Carlow, our second day in the country when I realized something was wrong..........the people and the atmosphere were not what I had expected to see. The quietness in the restaurants and the pubs, the sober faces of those we met on the street and the reserved politeness was not what the world said Ireland was.
Everyone was extremely polite, they stepped forward to help us if we requested help but all the joking, laughing, dancing happy-go-lucky that we had always been told was Ireland was not there. I never enjoyed an visit more in my life. Everything (except the drivers on the roads! YIKES!) was reserved and relaxed and we felt safe and comfortable. The only people who imposed on us in any way was another tourist and his wife (they thought we were locals in Longford and lucky for us once they found out we were just lowly Canadians they moved on and left us alone!)
Do you all get really tired of all the tourists and their expectations? I didn't talk to one soul about my family being from Ireland when we were there because I thought you all must be fed to the gills with American's and Canadians telling you about their G.G.Grandfather from......
I feel like I've been doing that to you all here the last couple weeks and that's what I wanted to thank you the most for. Your patience is appreciated..........big time.