Stories from the Emerald Island Part I
In honour of St. Patrick’s Day which will be celebrated by many people around the world, I choose to share some of the experiences gifted to me during my time in Ireland…
It had announced itself a long time in advance. It became noticeable like a foreboding with the beginning of 2010 when I felt a lot of things began to get stirred up in my life. It opened the door just a crack in the last quarter of 2011, when the man who is now my husband came over from the United States of America to Germany and moved in with me and my life got turned upside down – if there would still have been such a thing like up and down. It became inevitable in the beginning of 2012 when we began our journey to Ireland.
When Kim came to Germany to live with me in October 2011 his visitor’s visa was valid for three months. We did not know what would happen after that. Despite our research and inquiries at the alien’s office we were not able to get much more information than that. When the time had come for Kim to leave we decided to head to the USA together to visit his family. We had planned for two or three weeks. The route we chose would allow us to stay in Dublin, Ireland for one night before the next plane would bring us to Chicago, Illinois, USA.
It was a stormy evening when we arrived in Dublin. Looking back, I am amazed that the plane actually could go there and land. We checked in at a hotel near the airport and took a taxi downtown to have some vegan dinner and visit Dublin City Centre. Both of us had long dreamed of visiting the Emerald Island. What we had not dared to dream of was that this one night would become three months. Let’s make a long story short: After about two weeks including problems with my travel visa, more problems with the airline, moving to a hotel at City Centre and finally receiving a message from the German alien’s office that Kim could not return to Germany before the duration of three months (common rules regarding visitor’s visa), we finally listened to the guidance and started to look for a furnished apartment in Ireland that we could rent for three months.
Actually it is not easy to find such a place to stay in Dublin – especially when you wish to stay shorter than the duration of one year. Yet, the second apartment we viewed would become our new home for the next 12 weeks. Not only that, it also is located in a beautiful part of the city, only a 20 minute walk away from the buzzing City Centre. We managed to take care of the things that needed to be taken care of in Germany and found everything we needed for our life in Ireland, even dairy free food and people who would deliver fresh, locally produced, organic food directly to our door step. And we had lots of time to connect with the Emerald Island, to visit special places and to meet wonderful people.
This is one of the gifts which Ireland had in store for me: The courage to go on an adventure. To trust that all is well even when you don’t know what awaits you around the next corner. To take everything one breath at a time; and some beautiful memories.”
– Stefanie Neumann
What does adventure mean to you? How much of it do you allow in your life? Do you experience it rather as fun or as scary – or maybe both?