On the road again


A beautiful view from the market stand. I love the sky here, the sign and the fact that you can see the flying cheese brigade stand which was next to us every market


I wrote the following post over a week ago. I never finished it but I thought I’d share it today none the less. A lot has changed since then…but I’ll be updating you all soon enough.


Sunday 10 October 2010!! (10-10-10 craziness!) What in the heck? Time is absolutely flying me around Ireland, I can see the dust rising behind me as I drag on it’s coattails. I am so excited to begin traveling but have a weird I’m-gonna-miss-home-feeling happening these last few days oddly enough. Does Ballinasloe feel like home…?

We harvested all of these onions and MORE and then sat with this huge pile of them and cut all the tops off, while have a heated discussion about Harry Potter – good times 🙂


So this week a lot of changes happened on the farm, the entire energy and dynamic changed with the newcomers and it’s a wonderful and welcomed change. It’s so interesting how things seem to work out just exactly how they’re supposed to and it’s even better when you realize it and recognize the positive reasons. When I arrived I expected and yearned for more volunteers to be here, and all throughout, even though I enjoyed the calmness and silence, I had secretly wanted more people to be here, to share this with. But what I hadn’t realized was that this is how it was supposed to be all along. I needed that solidarity, that distance in order to sort myself out, my thoughts out and to realize my own potential for greatness with no one else to lean on – which I was prone to doing before I came here and would very well have done had there been an option for it. A blessing in disguise, a happy little gift from the Irish faeries.

I don’t really even know where to begin with this week. Monday was Ian from Washington’s, first day of work and having the extra hands did wonders for the workload and happiness of the crew. I’ve started calling him the educator because he has an infinite amount of new knowledge that he can relay with impeccable grace and humility, and by that I mean I don’t find him arrogant for this as I usually am enthralled by the new topics he brings to the table. Tuesday morning Gage had to make some deliveries in Dublin for Padraig and Una, which worked out nicely because his friend, Carrie from Vermont, was arriving at Dublin Int’l that same morning. So around noon Carrie arrived on the farm and even more changes happened! All of these people, myself included, are very unique spirits so I’d say it took a bit of time to work out the dynamics, but not long at all. Wednesday. Oh Wednesday. I almost forgot about you, but I wouldn’t be me if sh*t (excuse my french) like this did not occur in my life. Francis, Padraig’s mother who lives here on the farm with her husband Tom, came up to me weeks ago and said, “You and I will go to the cinema together. How long are you here for? Would you like to do that? I’m supposed to bring a young one to look after me but I don’t need lookin after.” Clearly I couldn’t say no to this jolly Irish woman who I’d previously only spoken 10 words to total. The weeks went by and she’d come over once and a while and tell me we were still going and each time she’d have a new detail about the plans. The time. The movie. The place. What time to leave work. And finally, the day of, that there was a fashion show that night and would I come to that with her as well. So Wednesday I wake up after not having taken a shower the night before because Tuesday’s we’re in the shed all day packing boxes, so in the fields we went this morning, weeding and harvesting potatoes. Us four Americans. HA! It was a nice contrast to some of my previous days in the field with people who speak little or no English and aren’t as familiar with the humor or pop culture references as these cats. We got off for lunch, I threw a sandwich down my throat and took off my dirty sweaty clothes and put on semi-decent clothing to join Francis. When I went into her house, for the first time since I’ve been here, I was introduced to a couple, Vivian and Jerry from Tipperary, who were staying with her the night before. They were on a small holiday and decided to drive around Ireland a bit and ended up giving us a ride to Athlone where the movie theater was, when we got out of the car Vivian gave me her mobile number and told me to call her if I’m in or near Tipperary in my travels. GREAT! 🙂


Francis stood with me as I snapped a few photos of this incredible sunset on the farm. She was planning a big dinner for all the volunteers the night she got sick.


I’d like to dedicate this post to two very special people who have passed on. I knew neither that well or that long but I was deeply saddened by both losses as they were very vibrant spirits indeed. Francis lived every moment of life until the very end – on Thursday night, she passed away suddenly from an aneurysm. Later that night I learned, via Facebook, that a man, a fellow diver, from Dudas’ passed away due to complications after a diving accident.

Francis Fahy and Arch McNamara you are loved and will be missed by many. May you rest in peace.


2 Comments Add yours

  1. eileen webb says:

    Hi Shannon,
    Holy Moly. I am sorry to read about Francis’ passing. God Bless her!
    I hope she watches over you on your upcoming travels.
    Have fun!
    Mrs. Webb


    1. Shannon says:

      Thank you Mrs. Webb! Things are much better now. The family seems to be coping fine so all is well. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s