Ireland... History. Beer. Music. Literature. One would be hard pressed to find another country with as much color, beauty, intelligence, passion and tragedy wrapped up in one beautiful knot. Perhaps that's an exaggeration... but suffice to say that we really enjoyed our time in Ireland, and are looking forward to returning someday, soon.
We appreciated Ireland in the best possible: each day was met with a little bit of history and a little bit of beer. Our first historical stop proved to the most poignant: Kilmainham Gaol.
Let me give you a little time context before I throw a bunch of photos at you. We were staying only a short distance from Occupy Dublin; the Occupy Wall Street movement having already extended to more than 200 cities around the world.
Kilmainham Gaol is where many leaders of the Irish rebellion were imprisoned - and killed. One prisoner on the eve of his wedding, in the chapel you see above.
Beware of the Risen People - that have harried and held, ye that have bullied and bribed.
...there is an unexplainable beauty about this place, one that has held so much sadness.
You know how on some historical tours, you have a quiet guide that speaks in monotone, clearly bored with the tired work they are doing? Not so much here. Our tour guide was amazing. Clearly passionate about Kilmainham Gaol, she really gave those of us on the tour a great picture of the historical and cultural significance. After the tour I asked her if I could take her portrait, and she kindly obliged.
And because life is fateful that way - there was artwork on display from a graphic novel about the history of the rebellion - "Blood Upon the Rose." We went to a few bookstores later, hunting for a copy.
America isn't the only place we tend to take things for granted... but I think it takes only a moment to explore the history of the world and how we got to the point we are now to appreciate the many things we have to be grateful for. Knocking the Occupy Movement or the individual character of any given "hippie, lazy" protestor isn't the issue. To stand for the preservation of our freedoms is a just battle - even if it isn't against 'terrorism' abroad, but for ethical conduct in government and business here at home.