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September 2014


A micro-post:

I was feeling a lot of first-world frustration about the frankly almost comical amount of rejections I have been receiving. I'd say my hit-rate is 1 out of 5. Which could be worse, I suppose? And then I got this letter from my sponsored child in Guatemala and my jaded, young-old heart melted like chocolate.


Now must:

  • Write back including a photo of self as requested, sitting on some green Irish grass (this way she can also see I am not actual man, (Much as I like being "Padrino": Aw!) which is added benefit.)
  • Plan trip to Gautemala one day.
  • Woman up.


and breathe out

So, first the M50, and out of west Dublin.

Then: Kildare, Meath, Westmeath, Longford, Roscommon, and Leitrim.

The dual carriageway turns into a single carriageway, and that into a narrower one, with no hard shoulder, on which the white line suddenly ends. That becomes a lane barely the width of a car, and grows a grassy spine.


Keep going. You'll be there. It's like this:


No food since Longford. Eat the bread, butter and some eggs they leave for you. No jam? Eat a sugar sandwich, in desperation. Sleep well. Next day, the air is perfectly clear. 


The land is spongy and reedy, with the occasional glimmering black lake. The fields are strung with cobwebs laced with dew;  you see dragonflies dart over the tea-coloured ditch water, and wrens picking blackberries for breakfast. Black caterpillars race across the lanes.  It's so quiet you can hear the neighbour sneeze from miles away and so dark you can see the stars at night. Time passes. Your muscles unknot.

On the long way back to Dublin, visit Sligo, Yeats' county. It's worth the extra miles to see Benbulbin, no  less:



Cast a cold eye
On life, on death.
Horseman, pass by!

Then reverse the county order, and home again, but now with an expanded horizon in your mind. 
I'll be expecting you.