Wow this post was a long time coming. I actually started it on the 16th of June if you’ll believe it and suddenly a month had passed and an ocean and half a continent had been crossed before my thoughts returned to the quiet beauty of Wicklow National Park. I’m hoping the fact that I’ve been lucky enough to visit the county 3 times in my life will make writing this from memory easier so lets see how this goes. I have a feeling this will end up a 2-part post.
As I sit in the upper lobby of my bewilderingly large hostel trying to decide whether the neon glow of the Generator’s welcome sign is gaudy or curiously comforting, a lone uilleann pipe begins its beautiful wailing just below me on the other side of the steel railings. As other instruments quickly join in on the melody the scenery transforms from the hostel that remains my sometimes-overcrowded-place-of-residence for the next two weeks into a warm and cozy local inn-like atmosphere where I instantly feel happy and at home. Honestly, I was half waiting for Merry and Pippin to jump on the tables and start stomping their feet to the music. OK, so I might STILL be waiting for that to happen – it’s good to dream right?
“All the world’s a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed.”
– Sean O’Casey (Irish Dramatist)
I can’t remember where I first saw this quotation written out but I remember loving it immediately. Such a great Irish play on the brilliant Shakespeare. Here’s the thing though, as much as I love this quote I should probably explain what it says to me before some of you begin to think I have slipped into some strange form of Irish melancholy because believe you-me that has yet to happen. I may be a little homesick but I am still the perpetually happy-go-lucky Erin you all know (and hopefully still love – if not I will work on rekindling that when I get home).
“A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures.”-Irish ExpressionI’m going to go have the long sleep – I hope this gives you guys the good laugh!
Disclaimer: Wrote this on the 6th, only getting around to posting it on the 7th.
Hiya! <— I’m definitely going to start using that. Sorry in advance to those who will be annoyed.
All right so I have a serious time limit on this one as my computer has less than an hour of power left and I’m still nervous to plug it in using the adaptor, the last time I did so (granted for 6 months straight) it fried my battery. So here goes!
“I’m not trying to tell you,” he said, “that only educated and scholarly men are able to contribute something valuable to the world. It’s not so. But I do say that educated and scholarly men, if they’re brilliant and creative to begin with…tend to leave infinitely more valuable records behind them than me do who are merely brilliant and creative. They tend to express themselves more clearly, and they usually have a passion for following their thoughts through to the end. And – most important – nine times out of ten they have more humility than the unscholarly thinker.”
– J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye
Woah, it has been months since I last posted. They weren’t kidding about grad school’s impressive ability to keep one busy – who are they you ask? Everyone. Seriously, it’s the first thing someone (un?)helpfully offers when you announce your intentions to go on to grad school: “you know you’re going to have no life right?” or the infinitely more clever, “so I’ll see you in.. two years then?” At any rate, clever or not, you were all right – I’ve been busy as hell.
That being said, I’ve made a pact to insert some fiction reading into my schedule this summer. Periodically I seem to forget that fiction calms, de-stresses, and just generally makes me happy and I’m going to need all the happiness I can muster as I embark on the madness that is an MA Thesis. This may make me slightly even more busy but I don’t consider reading (or writing for that matter) fiction something that takes up time – rather it enhances time, making life’s simple pleasures all the more enjoyable. I can’t tell you how many times a good book with even a single deliciously crafted sentence has opened my mind to possibilities and thoughts I maybe had access to all along but didn’t know how to reach.
You may notice, if you even care to read these ramblings, that I try to start my blog posts with a quote. It doesn’t necessarily have to come out of fiction, as not every brilliant word-smith writes fiction, but it has to be something that jumps out of the page and insists on arresting my attention for whatever reason.
“Have the courage to use your own understanding” – Immanuel Kant
Easier said than done sometimes.
It kind of feels like walking out on a ledge – and a flimsy-looking ledge at that. If I screw this up, do I fall to my…doom?
In the past 4 1/2 months of Grad school completed thus far (yes, I did have to count that out on my fingers) there has been one idea brought up over and over again in conversation with colleagues and friends: Do I belong here?