Lucky Me

The countdown begins.

Two weeks from today I will be half way around the world. Far away from what I know, everything will be different and everything will be new. Away from the hum-drum of my daily routine, my senses will be ignited with the sounds, scents, tastes, sights and feelings of a culture I’ve never experienced. My soul will overflow with passion and excitement for a new place to explore.

Ireland … Here I come!

Ireland_flag

Before I pack my bags, though, I must begin my preparation. For me, I like to imagine what the cities will look like, what the culture will feel like, and how the country will welcome me when I arrive. To visualize my trip before I physically arrive. I like to ask friends and family (and you!) for recommendations about interesting sights to see, delicious dishes to devour, and local treasures off the everyday path.

Today I wonder if all the Shamrocks will be four leafed? And if leprechauns will leap behind pots of gold at the ends of colorful rainbows and greet me at the airport? If locals will be bursting from the pubs shouting incoherent chants? (Something tells me, this folklore is not what I should be expecting.)

This trip marks my first international adventure since 2007 – ever since returning from the Czech Republic, my desire to go abroad has been an itch I couldn’t scratch. However, since The Written Road began one year ago, I have traveled only within the United States. Visiting places where the language barrier isn’t tested and to cities where the food tastes familiar.

In those adventures, I learned how traveling can be a state of mind and how searching for fresh and new experiences in your local neighborhood can be just as satisfying as exploring a distant land.

My intention behind this blog was to create a space for me to share my traveling experiences – and I always imagined the blogging experiences to be strictly international. My desire to discover a different way of life by traveling other countries is paramount to traveling inside of the US and engaging with fellow Americans. There is a rush when arriving in a foreign land, one that aligns me with a deeper purpose and fulfills my life with meaning.

People who travel can return to their home base and see their daily experiences differently; the well traveled understand that their way is not the only way.

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22 thoughts on “Lucky Me

  1. Hi Ryan,
    I am so happy for you! I have been to Europe several times but never to Ireland. I Love your way of preparing for your trip thru visualization and imagination. How clever you are. I imagine the countryside to be full of endless green hills, cottages and lovely people with thick accents and wild tempers! I have heard the pubs are Great. I know that often that is where the best local food is found. I so enjoyed going back thru your old blogs and reading them. Being an avid reader myself, I am always awe struck by someone who can put pen to paper and work their magic. The most I can do is occasionally make a silly poem that doesn’t follow any rule…it is just there to make someone laugh!
    Your final sentence is SO SMART!!!…”the well traveled understand that their way is not the only way.”
    You are one smart man!…please pass it on to others!
    Have a FANTASTIC time! I have a friend from Ireland who lives in NYC now, if I can get some ‘have to sees’ from him, I will pass them on to you.
    BethinCA

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  2. Lucky you, indeed! I haven’t been to Ireland but I did travel to England, spending two weeks driving throughout the wonderful countryside. We went as far south as Land’s End and then north to Wales.

    We enjoyed staying the the little inns of pub owners, so much fun to sit and chat with the locals. I would imagine Ireland is much like England in that respect.

    For the most part when traveling to foreign places I find the outskirts of the cities more interesting then the big cities.

    It’s fun to shop the local markets and stock up on picnic items and then find the perfect spot to enjoy the meal.

    Have a wonderful time. Looking forward to your pictures and comments upon your return.

    Save journey….

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  3. So jealous I have not been traveling overseas like I use to. At one time, I was an international consultant so travel was an everyday experience. The one thing I did not expect when traveling the British Isles’ was how I had to struggle to understand the natives, for me it is one of the hardest accents to understand in the world.

    You will find the Irish so welcoming and friendly. There are many unexpected B&B’s that can provide a welcoming haven. The lamb is so good and tastes so much different than it does here. Love beer but like it cold but after a few pints you forget about it.

    So excited for you Ryan and wish you a safe and happy adventure xoxo:)J

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  4. Hi Ryan

    Some very good friends of mine travel to Ireland every few years (apparently, this is what happens – once you’ve been – it calls you back, repeatedly!).

    They brought home the most fabulous Irish Linen from Belfast. The food is some of the best in the world and there is no shortage of Guinness! The Bushmills Inn on the Causeway Coast – it’s highly recommended – especially if you’re looking for a traditional Irish meal…all local produce!! They also went to a Medieval Banquet somewhere near Shannon.

    Have a wonderful, magical time and be prepared to return time and time again!

    Linda in Squamish

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  5. HELLO RYAN, HOW FUN, I’VE NEVER BEEN ACROSS THE ATLANTIC BUT I’D LOVE TO SEE SOME OF THAT BEAUTIFUL GREEN COUNTRY. GRAMPS HAS BEEN EVERYWHERE WHEN HE WORKED IN THE CORP. WORLD. SO SEE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN WHILE YOUR YOUNG.

    HELLO BETHINCA. I’M WELL. I THINK ABOUT SOME OF BB’S. I JUST DON’T HAVE MUCH TO SAY TO ALL THE YOUNG CHIT CHAT. THE BLOG HAS CHANGED AND SO MANY HAVE LEFT. THAT’S OK.IT’S ROSS’ BLOG NOT MINE. DON’T YOU LOVE RYANS’ STORIES. SO GREAT. LOVE THEM. YOUR A BEAUTIFUL LADY BETH. DON’T CHANGE.

    TAMPAGRANNY

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    1. Hi TAMPAGRANNY! I AM SO GLAD YOU ARE DOING WELL. I WAS WORRIED ABOUT YOU. I HAVE MISSED YOUR WONDERFUL SENSE OF HUMOR AND FUN INSIGHTS ON THINGS. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SAYING HELLO. I DO LOVE RYAN’S STORIES. HE TRULY HAS A GIFT!
      THANK YOU RYAN FOR LETTING ME ‘USE’ YOUR BLOG TO SAY HELLO TO TAMPAGRANNY, I TRULY APPRECIATE IT!
      HAPPY MOTHERS DAY TAMPAGRANNY!!!!!!!! A BIG CYBER HUG TO YOU!!!

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    1. Hey Tampa Granny!

      I haven’t written any books…yet! This blog is the beginning of my foray into public writing. I’ve written for magazines and newspapers, but those were not personal stories. One day soon, I hope to string together all of my life experiences and have them published. Thanks for the support!

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  6. Wow Ryan, I am way to excited for you! This trip will be so educational and hopefully you’ll meet new friends that will be in your life forever. I hope you post some pictures and words along the way.

    Be safe
    ♥ Jo

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  7. super cool Ryan!

    i have never been
    but i ‘m
    so irish
    hope you meet some
    of my relatives!

    Brennan’s
    &
    Rafferty’s

    LOL

    IT looks ! so pretty there!!
    the rocks at the Sea
    WOW

    and i bet the beer is fab!
    the people,
    if they r anything like me
    be prepared for lots of talks, stories and smiles,laughs!

    have a blast…xxxo

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  8. “the well traveled understand that their way is not the only way.”

    ~clearly most American are not well traveled then, lol.

    have a fantastic time in Ireland Ryan,
    btw, they really do drink Guinness there!

    shake your sheleighlee and dance a jig for us while there, okay?

    πŸ™‚

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  9. RYAN, IF YOU EVER DO WRITE A BOOK REMEMBER ME. I WILLBUY YOUR FIRST ONE. OF COURSE I’LL WANT YOU TO AUTOGRAPH IT FOR ME. BECAUSE I’LL BE ABLE TO SAY I REMEMBER WHEN.

    TAMPAGRANNY

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  10. I get to look forward to your writting on your adventure to Irland. Cool!
    Who will do the camera work for inside dish?!?
    Safe travels!

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  11. Ryan, how cool that you’re going to Ireland! I LOVE reading your stories!

    Hey Tampagranny!! Good seeing you!! Hey to you chriann..Where have you been hiding? lol

    Take lots of pics Ryan!

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  12. Hey Ryan! I completely understand what you mean by the travelling quotient in life, particularly when it comes to taking yourself out of our comfort zone and into a foreign land. I’m in the midst of making a big decision myself about moving across the other side of the country to Sydney or throwing myself in the deep end and moving to Montreal!

    Have a safe and pleasant journey and take it ALL IN! You write beautifully and we look forward to reading about this next adventure πŸ™‚

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    1. Kenny! Thanks for taking the time to check out the blog! I say take the leap of faith and make the big move! Go to Montreal! Look forward to hearing what you think about my upcoming trip!

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      1. Thanks for the two cents and support, Ryan! I always follow my gut but it seems it’s deserted me for the first time in my life! I’ll let you know how it pans out though, I need to make a decision VERY soon! :S

        I’m very excited for you, I’ve not been to Ireland myself but my friend Naomi fled there four years ago and fell in love with the place! And P.S. It’s a welcome relief to read something so insightful and eloquently written πŸ™‚ Safe and pleasant travels till then!

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  13. Ryan,
    Truly have a wonderful time in Ireland. Go to the little corner pubs, sit with the Irish folks and have a beer with them. Listen to their stories of their homeland and share with us. Take lots of pictures!!!

    My family is from County Cork. My Grandfather O’Brien came to the United States in the early 1900’s. He was amongst 13 children in his family.

    Enjoy your well deserved vacation….

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  14. Ryan, I hope you have a wonderful time in Ireland. You have been working real hard (I can tell by the success being achieved since you joined Ross at ID). My only hope for you, as I know very little about Ireland, is that it is a great adventure for you. Bring back some good pics and stories for us blog buddies.

    Like

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