It’s Monday and it’s freezing in Dublin, but it’s also 4th July so today I wanted to take some time to wish all my friends and readers from across the pond, a very Happy Independence Day.
Us Irish love a good celebration, and while we may not celebrate the 4th July in the same way as our American friends do, we always send a Sláinte or two their way, as they do for us on St. Patrick’s Day.
I think most Irish people feel an affinity to America as our history is so closely linked in many ways. It has long been a haven for Irish emigrants as we all know, and with more Irish in America now than in Ireland, it’s no wonder many of us love going there. I love America, I always have.
I love its cities, I love its food, I love its spirit, I love its people, I love its ability to make you feel like anything is possible, I love its weather, I love its history, I love its movies, I love its streets that are laid out so perfectly, I love its traditions. I’m not so fond of some of its crazy characters, but I still love it. I’m sure you get the picture now!
So many of my favourite things come from there, and I love going there. I try to go at least every couple of years and never once has it disappointed me. I’ve been to California, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, New York, Florida, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. There is still so much more of it I want to discover.
I want to stand at the Lincoln memorial and have a chat to Abe, I want to sing a country song in a Nashville bar, I want to eat real southern fried chicken in the deep south, I want to go to Graceland, I want to take a selfie at the White House, I want to drink wine in Napa, I want go to a show in the Grand Ole Opry, I want take a helicopter ride over the Grand Canyon, I want to visit a real ranch in Montana. I want to see it all and do it all.
When I was younger I used to say, before I die I’m going to get in a car and drive the whole 50 states of America, and that dream is still there. I haven’t thought about it for a while, it may not happen for a while, but its still there.
As I sit here looking out the window at another city I truly love, my mind can’t help but wander to the warm sunny US of A climate, imagining all the celebrations that will be had today, and wishing I was there for the BBQ, beer and firework fun.
I’ve been in the US for the fourth on two separate occasions and both were days I’ll never forget. Summer dreams and sunny memories.
So to all my American friends, I wish you a very Happy 4th July and hope you have a wonderful day.