Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Top of da mornin to ya!

(Images sourced from Google Images - impawards.com and my personal photos from my holiday)

England – known for its fish and chips, bad weather, cockney accents and dirty city.

But whenever I go abroad I am always quite happy to return to the familiarities of the pound, my bed and good old Tescos. Yes I wish I could pack the 28 degree weather in my Louis Vuitton suitcase and laze by the pool until I’ve browned to perfection everyday but as they say ‘There’s no place like home’.

Well actually, there is!

The land of leprechauns, four leaf clovers and Guinness. Yes you’ve guessed it...France! No I’m only joking...IRELAND!!

I have just returned from a week in this beautiful country and it’s safe to say, I was very impressed.

'Why Ireland?' I hear you and many friends ask. To be quite truthful when I got on that plane there was a teeny tiny part of me thinking ‘I wish a sunny beach holiday was awaiting my arrival at the other end of this flight’ but after experiencing Irish life, I am very pleased I surpassed another predictable beach holiday for something a little bit different. So, why Ireland? Well we actually stayed in County Wicklow and I chose this location not because of the rave reviews I had heard and not because of the spectacular scenery it boasted but because of PS I Love You. Not the sweet nothings, romantic signing at the end of a love-letter but the hit film starring dishy Irishman Gerrard Butler. Anyone that loves their rom-coms will know what I’m talking about.

The film was set in County Wicklow and when I watched the scene where Gerry and Holly met, I taught it luked amazin I did (bad attempt at writing in an Irish accent there!) The rolling hills, the vast amount of greenery, the little old cottages. What a romantic setting. Of course Holly and Gerry’s fairytale romance having occurred in Ireland had nothing to do with my holiday decision at all. The thought of my being on a walk or drinking in a pub and meeting a handsome Irishman didn’t influence me at all. Not one bit. Honestly...

But as soon as (ahem) boyfriend and I picked up Percy, our little Nissan hire car, and drove down to Ashford, passing through Dublin, stopping at Tescos and taking in the pretty surroundings, we decided that Ireland is exactly like England---but better!! It’s cleaner, everyone there is so friendly and they have the best accents ever. I couldn’t help but giggle as we sat and drank in a pub, listening to the locals gossip.

And although they actually experience more rainfall than the UK and County Wicklow encountering 170-200 days of rain every year, we had perfect 22 degree weather all week!! Minus the last day but I was coming home anyway so I really didn’t mind. Between all the walking, driving, shopping and site seeing, we even squeezed in a day at the beach where I got away with sunbathing in a bikini!! I wouldn’t have believed it either!

I appreciate that this holiday isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and especially as we’re a young couple you’d think we’d rather be abroad sunning ourselves and drinking cocktails but to have your very own house for a week, cooking together, dining out, and doing something different everyday opposed to the monotonous routine of breakfast, pool, lunch, pool, dinner, drinks, bed, was really enjoyable.

I would be completely fibbing if I said that I’ve gone off beach holidays now and am opting for quieter, country holidays in England or elsewhere from now on because hello, I’m only twenty and have plenty more time for those once I’ve outgrown the sunbathing til I fry weeks away. But it was just a taste of something different.

And this time when I flew home, there was of course the excitement of seeing family and friends again but not one part of me was pleased to be leaving and returning to the comforts of England, because Ireland had all my home comforts and more.

Beautiful, picturesque scenery, breathtaking views, warm weather (I know it just happened to be our luck that week but it still counts!), no aggressive drivers on the roads, lovely little villages, right-hand drive still, good portions of food (they’re certainly not stingy over there like us Brits-the Irish aren’t shy with their helpings), delicious food at that too, Irish beers and ciders, amazing shopping in Dublin (I loved this city, there’s everything that London offers but more, and it’s way cleaner), friendly people, great accent, and not forgetting our gorgeous little cottage with balcony...all loves of mine and the little green country.

I would even go as far as saying I’d move there. Home to Louis Walsh, Westlife, Pierce Brosnan, Colin Farrell, and Jedward, so what’s stopping me?

Hmmm...I think it would be more the above reasons that encouraged my move though don’t you? No offence John and Edward.

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