Home now from my trip away, though Ireland is still very fresh in my mind. The good friends I have made, the rolling green pastures, and the snow capped mountains are all still very present. Then, of course, there’s my time with donkeys, enough tea to float a 25-pound turkey (today is Thanksgiving!), and the great fun I have with Sally traipsing through farms and cow pastures, through gorse and over stone walls, like two wild children who have escaped school for the day. If we were children, I am certain we’d have a secret hideout built with found objects and discarded lumber, a place to tie our ponies and go off exploring the fields and woods, looking for treasures. Of course, we’d have a picnic basket full of goodies, just like the one we never leave without, to keep us well fed while ‘adventuring’. When we are together, my friend and I, although we are mid-life in age, we revert to our Huckleberry Finn/ Pippy Longstocking personalities. I’m so glad for that.
Now home and as I settle back into my familiar stomping grounds, I will join with loved ones to celebrate Thanksgiving. Family and friends will gather for a meal, some will come in from a long morning of hunting ready to fill their bellies with stuffing and cranberry sauce, others will have enjoyed a lazy morning preparing a side dish to bring over. I hope they stayed in their P.J’s while stirring pots. The house will be full of chatter, laughter, and hugs. I’ll be glad to be home. I am glad to be home. I love the landscape and the community that is felt in both places….Maine and Ireland. I love going to Ireland and feeling the acceptance of the people there, who are all so generous and welcoming. Jo Noonan, who I learn so much from. Cathy and Frank who invite me for dinner and share stories of their past. Charlie, of course, Charlie!, who one might like to tuck into their pocket to bring home….a long ride for my 91-year-old friend who has never stepped foot out of Ireland. I also love coming home to my tribe here, my friends and family, who really are the essence of home to me.
So much happening in the world, lots to be concerned about, work ahead of us all, but today I will focus on cooking a meal, listening to loved ones, and being grateful. Happy Thanksgiving, all.