“Red Ferry, Blue Ferry,” by Michael Fallon.

Triangulating Ireland before Google, cell phones, and GPS.

“I thought myself pretty clever to have come up with what seemed a foolproof method … The islanders knew that their Ireland and mine were not the same place.

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All the help you get. From AranIslands.le.
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A vintage postcard showcases both charm and rugged landscape.

“The long, lyrical echo of Irish travail had filled me with a longing to know the country of my ancestors and to feel some sense of belonging there.”

If I kept my mouth shut, I was sometimes mistaken for an Irishman, if not for an islander. As soon as I spoke, my American accent gave it all away, yet I was still met with kindness, warmth, and friendliness, which was entirely natural for Irish people, who for some reason hadn’t yet had it all hammered out of them: Fallon, now that’s an Irish name, isn’t it?

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Dún Aonghasa. Wikimedia Commons.
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Irish actors perform Synge’s ‘Playboy of the Western World,’ which caused scandal and riots in Ireland. From Wikimedia Commons.
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Dún Aonghasa from above.
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The Black Fort.
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The island made simple.
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A scene presented by the Clifden chamber of commerce.
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Blue ferry, Kilronan.
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Rossaveal, or Ros a’Mhíl, now hosts a summer Celtic language camp.
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Galway city at sunset, from irelandbeforeyoudie.com.
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The U.S. favors its Irish ancestry; Chicago dyes its river green for St. Patrick’s Day. Wikimedia.
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In the U.K., canned corned beef is known as “bully beef.” Wikimedia.
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Irish-American corned beef, 1898. Wikimedia.

“I think now that we were in two different countries…. Each of us was no doubt looking for a different Aran.”

The restaurant filled to the brim with annoyed silence. No more sandwiches came out of the kitchen.

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Flag of Ireland.
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Scene at Skibbereen during the Great Famine, by Cork artist James Mahony (1810–1879), commissioned by The Illustrated London News, 1847.
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Irish dances are broken down on http://www.hoilands.com/faq.htm.
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Dressed up for traditional Irish dancing.
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Some Irish still live in old cottages without running water or heat. This one is from the Aran Islands, courtesy of Pexels.com.
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True stories. Honestly.

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An interdisciplinary magazine of nonfiction narratives and artwork.

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