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Mom's first trip home to Donegal in 91 years

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City Slicker

Mom's first trip home to Donegal in 91 years

This past summer I brought my mother to Ireland to visit the birthplace of her parents. Not a small trip considering my mother is 91 years old. Until then all she knew of Ireland was what she had heard in stories from her parents and some old yellowed photographs. My grandparents came from County Donegal. Probably the most rugged part of Ireland in the far north western corner. My mother never met any of her grandparents nor any other family beyond her immediate family and then the family she started here in the USA. 

I can’t even express the emotion as my mom met all of her first cousins for the very first time. Within what seems like a few minutes we were all sitting around laughing and telling stories like a family that have been together daily for their whole lives. I rented a house down the street from where most of the cousins live in the little village of Cloghan. Each day we would make the rounds and visited to the cousins. Of course that meant having tea and biscuits at each home. The love and kindness that the family showed was very heartwarming. We had planned to do a lot of sightseeing but that somehow kept getting put off so that we could spend as much time as possible with the family.

When it was time to say our goodbyes it was very difficult and very sad. We consolled ourselves by saying that we would come back next summer and visit again. Well we are hoping to do it again this summer. There are so many sites that we never saw last time and somehow I suspect we probably won’t see them again this time. We want to squeeze in as much time with everyone as possible. The local newspaper heard about my mothers historic visit and did a story in the newspaper on her. What a nice keepsake to bring home with us and share with the family here. The McNamee clanThe McNamee clanGlenfinn Newspaper storyGlenfinn Newspaper story