You may have guessed from the name McNally that I have a touch o’ the Irish in me. To be honest, most of my Irishness comes from Himself, the Boston Irishman I married and love so dearly. On our very first blind date 20+ years ago, he played me a song called “The Town I Loved So Well”, and I got teary-eyed at the beauty and sadness of it. I eagerly embraced the Irish heritage, and Himself laughs now that I’m “more Irish than him” when it comes to history and music.
To say our St. Paddy’s party is a big event is putting it mildly – our house fills with friends and family, and the music and beer are flowing! After dinner, I serenade with a collection of our favorite melodies, including my favorite love song, “Grace,” which is based on a true story during the Irish struggle for freedom (and I’ve stood in the prison chapel where they wed). Of course, being an Irish song, ’tis tragic, for Ireland is a nation with a tragic past.
As G.K. Chesterton wrote: “The great Gaels of Ireland are the men that God made mad,
For all their wars are merry, and all their songs are sad.”
But there is much joy and beauty in the Ireland of today. And the Irish people are beyond compare – warm and friendly and full of laughter. So I’ll share some photos from our last trip to the Emerald Isle (click on any photo to start a slide show), and wish you all the very merriest of St. Patrick’s Days! And yes, in case you’re wondering, there will be some Irish characters in future books, and perhaps a story set in Ireland itself.