Éirinn go Brách
I hope you’re all wearing something green today!
In my self-isolation quarantine zone, I have a head of cabbage, bean soup (I don’t eat meat) and lots of greens to eat to keep me fortified with the right immune boosting energy. This is a favorite day of mine because I can almost feel my Irish ancestors dancing around me, especially as I eat the cabbage.
Honoring them is fun but also important in working towards a brighter future for each of us — understanding the sacrifices made by many in history so that we enjoy the ability to have more information in this day and age of pandemic, confusion and misinformation.
My mantra for travel and connecting in the world is centered strongly around honoring history, respecting peoples of the past and learning in meaningful ways in order to further humanity. To this point, I have a few blog posts you might want to check out that work to bring these concepts to life and might help during isolated and emotionally challenging times. Chernobyl, Berlin, and The Darker Side of Travel might seem like downer topics but they all focus around finding bright spots of humanity amidst troubling times.
The stories of the past give us insights that don’t have to direct our feelings now. To me, it’s about using historic data points as inspiration to grow and expand into something new, despite the current scenario. Think of all the potential ways humanity can expand from our current times.
Compassion is growing. Citizens are uniting around a foe that doesn’t care about politics, race or national identity. For the first time in many generations, we are being asked to put other people first in our decisions around how to interact socially. And humanity is slowly accepting this notion in ways that can hopefully help slow down or flatten the curve — preventing more acute catastrophe.
It is my hope that as we work to persevere through a scary pandemic and even scarier disruption to the global economy (we will get through this), connection with nature can emerge in new, higher ways. Parks and gardens can still be places to practice social distancing while also taking in more optimism associated with the leaves of spring pushing forward — not closing because of a pandemic, but opening despite it.
As a reminder, I have several posts on gardens and nature that might be a welcome alternative to the 24-hour news cycle. And just in case you run out of Charmin to Squeeze, here is a fun read from Hipcamp on natural alternatives when the Costco pallets are empty.
When the isolation blues get me down, I always remember this quote:
“Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.”Frank Lloyd Wright
Of course self-isolation doesn’t work too well if the mission, like mine, is to travel, make connections and report back to the world. So while it’s tough to confine my soul to a specific location for a period of time, photos of past journeys, chock-full of wonderful memories, are my new way to connect with the world I love. On this day, I’d be remiss not to bring to life the old country of Ireland, so I’ve created a photo essay of 20 shots that zap me right back to my time in Donegal last winter, 2019. In addition to photos, it’s possible to gain inspiration through the stories of others, including my own experience in Ireland at the Winter Solstice.
I can wander back in time to Ireland, when St. Patrick was kidnapped as a teenager in Britain and sold into slavery in Ireland to the would-be king. And ponder the notion that when they say St. Patrick drove all the snakes out of Ireland (which didn’t have snakes to begin with) they actually mean he drove all the pagans from the Emerald Isle. And that might not even be true.
Regardless of whether we study the true history and theology around St. Patrick or simply enjoy green beer, this day honors a person who stands for a uniting cry — bringing people together and giving them hope. And may my gift of blarney inspire you to have hope, nature and love in your life today and every day.
Now, I’m off to a virtual St. Patrick’s Day Zoom party!
Éirinn go Brách