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What DO Expats Miss About Ireland?


livingstone

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 3, 2004
Messages
24,346
It's Christmas, so maybe some positive things that expats miss about Ireland to counteract the negativity in the thread about what we DON'T miss.

For me - it's open fires. Londoners don't seem to value open fires in the same way as the Irish, so it's really difficult to find a place with an open fire - even houses that originally had them often have them blocked - and there are few things better than being sat in front of a roaring fire.

Linked to that - and don't tell Ming - is turf. Admittedly more a rural thing than an Irish thing, but the only thing better than being sat in front of a roaring fire is if that fire is a turf fire, with all the smell and memories of hand cut turf.

Then there's the spontanaity that comes with a combination of living in a small town with also being Irish. In London, everyone I know is based all across London so there really is no prospect of people just nipping in for tea, or a few friends dropping by on a friday night convincing you to go to the pub. It's not just being a big city though - I think there's something uniquely Irish about dropping in to someone unannounced or uninvited for a cup of tea and letting the evening take you where it takes you.

And of course - taytos, cidona and club orange...
 

RichardDeClare

Active member
Joined
Feb 23, 2010
Messages
126
Tanora and Cidona

Not freak people out with an impromptu cupla focal gaelige.

The Echo!!

Strolling down Panna shouting "Sorry" to get someones attention!
 

seanmacc

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Joined
Jan 10, 2009
Messages
1,022
I lived in the Pacific North West for a couple of years. A decent cup of tea was missed badly. The ability to show up on peoples doorsteps for a cup of tea or a scoop was another. Not having to work 8-5 everyday with manditory overtime on a Saturday if required and not getting paid holidays was a huge one. How easily socially acceptable it was to drink and drive over there was a huge annoyance to me.

Not having to pay $20 to watch a GAA or rugby match at a god awful hour of the morning was a huge one.

Decent Guinness as well of course.
 

kimari

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Joined
Jan 16, 2011
Messages
861
Twitter
dont like it
when i lived abroad the thing i missed most was a batch loaf loved the heels with plenty of kerrygold
 

TheWexfordInn

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Joined
Jul 27, 2012
Messages
12,144
My old haunt The Wexford Inn on Wexford Street. Long since closed and reopened as The Mean Fiddler.
 

Schomberg

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Jul 6, 2009
Messages
12,341
Toughie...when I lived in Europe, I'd have had loads to say. Now I'm in England, most of the stuff I missed I can get here...hmmm...the closeness of everything. You can pop in the car and drive to most places around the country comfortably in a few hours. That's not the case here...
 

controller

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Joined
Feb 25, 2009
Messages
3,176
It's December, it was 41 degrees here on Monday, I miss the cold weather (really), I miss snuggling up under a big quilt,(It's so hot at night, we only sleep with a sheet on), and I miss the cold rain. It only rains warm.........
 

livingstone

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Joined
Mar 3, 2004
Messages
24,346
It's December, it was 41 degrees here on Monday, I miss the cold weather (really), I miss snuggling up under a big quilt,(It's so hot at night, we only sleep with a sheet on), and I miss the cold rain. It only rains warm.........
I would hate not to have a cold winter - in fact I'd prefer if we could have a more arctic winter; one thing that would prompt me to move to Montreal at some point :)
 

statsman

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Joined
Feb 25, 2011
Messages
56,230
When I lived abroad it was definitely a decent cup of tea that I missed most.
 
Joined
Oct 8, 2011
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40,632
Clonakilty black pudding. Peter's pub. Twink. The sea. The Phoenix Park.

Spot the odd one out.
 

Roberto Jordan

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Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Messages
2,078
Some of things I miss are contradictory with the things I do NOT miss. So elements of the way of life etc. are probably not match able without some of the downsides like nepotism and “pull”…

Because of the fact I am from rural Ireland there is little of the urban Irish lifestyle that is now that of most of the population that I do miss. Therefore if I am to be stuck in a city it may as well be the right one i.e. not Dublin, cork, Belfast or the big towns dressed as city elsewhere….

Howsoever:
I am enjoying living in the middle of NYC and the experience of a “mega-city”. But there are times I miss the rural way of life I grew up with. The slow pace of life would be nice from time to time. The way the day can be measured in the movements of yourself and others ( postman, creamery truck, the guy keeping horses & hounds in your lower field, milking the cows, stopping at the creamery for “messages”, calling to the postmaster to check the time of a match……..)
And the way the year, despite the constant rain, can be measured slowly , almost imperceptibly, but quite definitely moving by based on the subtle shift in season , the appearance of the fields, the color of the sea and behavior & presence of birds and animals…..while I don’t miss 300 days of rain, the weather here is short, sharp and sudden….in October I went from wearing shorts/ t-shirt to snow in a week…..

I like the freedom, anonymity and empowerment that the size of this place confers , but there are times I miss the security of a local community and the knowledge that no matter who you meet there is at best 1 to 2 degrees of separation between you, which constrains ( negative) but also enforce civility ( positive)

On a more prosaic level, I miss the GAA. I play here but it is ba$tardised and miss-run. I miss the real GAA ( I transferred at home on moving away for work, so not necessarily saying it has to be my parish club).
I miss the bright , rare, summer days leading excitedly to long nights on the field in training or an unimportant league game. The feeling of sunburn from the day. The vigor and vim inspired by the fine weather. The speed of the ball along the dry but yielding Irish sod. The way the light slowly fades as the evening progresses. The way that even in recent years as we aged none of us would want to go home on a night like that and the evening would stretch from drills, to physical to a never-ending game, to shots on goal and free taking. The final , half joking shot to nothing as you walk back to the dressing room. The surge of joy on devouring whatever had been left out to eat at home, in a darkening back kitchen ,with the lights off and the room semi-lit by the almost “artic summer” light at 10:30 at night.

I don’t miss the weather, but one or two soft days in May or September when you can hear the soft gentle rain hiss off the grass ( no traffic noise!) would be nice. As would a couple of gentle, damp Sundays when the mist rolls in over the cliffs from the sea and settles down for the day, local radio blares out a stalemate battle in somme like mud from the later stages of a club championship, the kitchen fills with steam and heat and the evening promises a pint or two with friends…..

The above might be a little idealistic, but it is what I miss. I am truly happy here. Enjoying pretty much every minute , but you can be happy and still miss things.
 
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