What I’ve Learned in/and About Ireland

  1. The Irish people are very patriotic and constantly work to maintain, improve, restore and spread the Irish way of life:
    1. any person seeking public office must speak fluent Gaelic in order for them to be able to speak with and listen to their potential constituents.
    2. all public signs in Ireland are written in both English and Gaelic (in Wales, they are written in English and Welsh)
    3. Ireland continues to work on having their historic writings, emblems, monuments, and other symbolisms returned to Ireland from Britain
    4. Ireland also continues to strive towards one united Ireland to be out from under British rule
    5. The tour guide in Killarney explained why so many places in Ireland begin with “Bally, Kil, Skellig and Cloch”.
      • Ciarrai = Ker = County Kerry meaning the place of the people of Ciar.
      • Bally=Baile which means homestead of….
      • Kil=Cille so Killarney is the Place of Arney,
      • Cloch=rock of ….
  2. Irish Phrases we use today
    •  “Beyond the Pale” came from the 1169 British Invasion of Ireland.  Local people who lived in land beyond the scope of the British reach were said to live Beyond the Pale.
    • He who runs away lives to fight another day.  This saying obviously came into being when the Gauls, Vikings, Pict’s, Anglo-Saxons, Romans and other invaders showed up on Irish soil.
    • A new broom sweeps clean, but an old one knows the corners.     Ah, a phrase where we only use the first half.  It means a broom that is broken in is more flexible.
    • Far away hills are green.  We say this as “the grass is always greener
    • Little pigs have big ears.  I remember my grandmother using this phrase when I was a child
    • If you lie down with dogs you’ll rise with fleas
  3. Follow this link for fun information from Dublin, remembering that Irish people have a great sense of humor.    http://extra-extra.blogspot.ie/2007/06/nicknames-in-dublin.html
  4. And, it seems that all soups (except chowder) served in Ireland are puree’d, even the vegetable as you can see in the photo.

Vegetable Soup in Portmagee, IE5.The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) was founded in 1824 by Richard Martin, an Irish politician and one of the first animal rights activists.

6. In the late 18th century, Cork was the largest exporter of butter in the world, mostly to Britain and the British Empire.Butter Museum, Cork

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It was interesting to me to find that when I visited the Butter Museum in Cork, to learn that when the Irish dairy community wanted to expand their exports (which had been primarily to Britain) the British said it was not a good idea.  Ireland now exports KerryGold dairy products to 81 countries worldwide.

7. There are NO postal or zip codes in Ireland, except in the city of Dublin.

8. Ireland was the last country in Europe to permit divorce. It was narrowly approved by a 1995 referendum when only 50.28% voted in favour (this was three percentage points more than at the previous referendum in 1986) and the first-ever divorce granted in Ireland was in 1997. Irish law allows couples to divorce only if they have been living apart for four years.

9. St. Patrick’s clearing of snakes in Ireland is a myth.   Ireland has never had snakes because it is an island and a really long swim for a cold-blooded snake. (No leprechans either)

10. There are more mobile phones in Ireland than people.

Next stop SPAIN!

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3 thoughts on “What I’ve Learned in/and About Ireland

  1. Love it! So many interesting facts. I was able to take a trip and not leave my desk. Thank you for your adventurous spirit my friend!

    Like

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