Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Missing Gorse

... and other symptoms of Ireland-sickness

After camp we say you get "camp-sick", just as you might have been home-sick when you arrived. There are moments when I find myself a little bit emerald-island-sick. I am grateful as all get out to be home and surrounded by friends and family with a car and jobs and swing dancing and so many people I love within easy access, but I love Ireland as well.

It's been rainy here at home and nothing screams Ireland like rainy days. The rain reminds me of Ireland, it was chilly-near-consent-type of rain and our dear little (un-heated) house on St Brendan's Ave was quite cold, but I remember much more the overwhelming warmth of walking into a pub at night or the cozy comfort of sipping tea wrapped in a blanket on our couch watching the Love Machine or something equally as ridiculous.
Gorse growing on Crogh Patrick (and photographed in the rain)
I started reading The Thorn Birds and on the first page the main character Meggie goes and sits down by the gorse bush. The only reason I know what that refers to is gorse grew everywhere in Ireland. When I read about the gorse it was like it mentioned my college or hometown, I remembered how much I loved gorse and how I missed everything surrounding the bright-yellow-resilient-gorse. We walked past it on our way anywhere and hillsides are bight yellow with its flowers. Gorse is impressively tough, growing in the almost-purely-rocky-areas, blooming all year round and inspiring the saying:
 "When the gorse is out of bloom, kissing's out of fashion"

It is terribly prickly which one might expect, but it smelled just like coconut which I would have never expected. The juxtaposition of the tropical-sunny-scent-of-coconut and the sturdy-wild-cold-rained-on-yellow-flowers of the gorse is wonderful (and yes I use juxtaposition as often as possible, because it is one of the top 3 coolest words ever). I treasure the gorse and the rain and the pubs and the Irish friends and 74 St Brendan's Ave, they are all very very grand.

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