When I first arrived in Dublin I was a bit overwhelmed. I had never been to the city before you see, I had always lived in a small village in County Mayo. I couldn’t believe the amount of people. I would get on the city bus and ride around for hours looking out the window, looking at all the different faces, and not recognizing a single one. As I looked, I would wonder where would I fit in this menagerie. As I wondered, the more I longed to go back to the only home I ever knew.
-story told to me by Roy
(When I asked if he’s ever been back home in the 30 years he’s been in Dublin, he simply smiled and said “no “ as he finished his pint.)
My family’s been in Dublin now over three generations. Originally we were from a village near Leitrim. They were mostly farmers, you see. But after the famine those few that survived left. We still own a lot of land there, but I’ve never been there myself. It’s a ghost town, nobody lives there. Now it’s just a village of empty, crumbling cottages.
-story told to me by Mick
FARMER & FAIRY RING
My grandfather was once interviewed on a national radio program. He began speaking about everyday things, and then casually brought up the time when all his hay bales were turned inside-out by piskies, you know, a mischief fairy. Also understand this about Irish farmers; they are very pragmatic. If my grandfather says he saw something, then he really saw it. The interesting thing is that the radio host never even questioned him. It was as if my Grandda told him it was raining that day.
-story told to me by Fiona
My Grandmother has been afraid of the water since she was a girl. Her mother used to tell her stories of Merpeople who’d come and drown children if they went in the sea. When she’d watch my brother and I play in the water, she’d laugh but always with a hint of concern. And she never came in the water. Imagine; living on an island your whole life and being afraid of water.
- story told to me by Clara