All Things Irish

From my visit to Dun Aengus.

In honor of St Patrick’s Day, and because I still really miss Ireland, I’m going to fill March with All Things Irish.  Or at least all the things that I loved or hated or was entranced/ intrigued/puzzled by during our two-and-a-half years there.

We’re going to start the month out with a movie, set in Ireland of course.  And because it’s my birthday, and because as a child I always wished I had been born a day earlier, on Leap Day, my pick for today is . . .  you guessed it . . . Leap Year.  I only saw this for the first time last night, but that’s probably because I was in Ireland when it came out and it never got there.

Now, I’m not a movie critic, and what I like isn’t necessarily what the critics like, so I’ll stay away from comments about acting or directing.  I do know something about contrived plots but, ahem . . . suffice it to say that it was a cute-but-silly movie.  But oh, did it bring back memories!  It was worth watching just for the scenery.

"Leap Year" - country roads, hedges & cows, oh my!

The narrow country roads lined with hedges, the particularly Irish look of the villages, the dairy cows blocking cars.  The smooth, green hills and stone walls.  The narrow bed in a tiny B&B.  The hail coming out of nowhere on a sunny day.  The gorse in bloom.

Yes, been there, done that.  And I’d do it again.

I even had the thrill of recognizing Dun Aengus and its cliffs at the end.  Okay, it was supposedly on the Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry, and it’s really on the isle of Inis Mór near Galway Bay, but still.  I grabbed Hubby O’Mine and said, “I’ve been there!  I’ve looked out over those cliffs!”  During a break at a week-long writers conference, actually, and . . . hmm,  you’ll have to wait for another post to hear about that.

Leap Year is a movie that has its geography all screwed up, as well as its seasons, but just forget about that and enjoy the scenery.  And Matthew Goode’s soft voice and soulful eyes.  Even if he’s not Irish.  (And okay, I’ll give you guys Amy Adams – she’s gorgeous!)

PS – if you want to know where scenes were really filmed, hop on over to Jerry Garrett’s blog about the locations.

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11 Responses to All Things Irish

  1. Well we have something in common Jennifer! I have been to Ireland, loved it and I am Irish! We started out in Dublin, then headed south to Kilkenny, then to Waterford, Cork, Killarney, Kenmare, Dingle, Adare, and Limerick. Saw the cliffs of Moor, well as much as we could see in a week. It was a trip, not a vacation. We took our two sons and had a blast. They kept calling my husband the Scottsman because McFarland is not Irish, but Scottish. His clan actually got kicked out of Scotland for rebel rousing. But my maiden name was Murphy and my father’s mother was O’Brien, so yes, really Irish. And I did see the movie Leap Year a couple of years ago. Not the best written movie, but the scenery was awesome. So I will look forward to more of your posts this month. And I do hope things have settled down for you Jennifer and that you are back home. Thank you for these memories! 🙂
    Karen McFarland recently posted..When Life Gives You Lemons…My Profile

    • Jennifer Jensen says:

      Well, hey, Irish Karen! My married name obviously isn’t Irish, but my maiden name, Garvin, is. Somewhere from Co Mayo, we think, but we haven’t gotten them across the water yet. But my Scots-sounding Murphys are actually Ulster Scots from County Down.

      Where did you get to in Cork? We lived just outside Kinsale.

  2. Emma says:

    The scenery is beautiful in Leap Year. I had to laugh when they were showing Dun Aengus in Dingle 🙂
    Emma recently posted..Book Review: Casting Shadows by J. Kelley Anderson (Goblins & Witches & Cogs, Oh My!)My Profile

    • Jennifer Jensen says:

      I wasn’t sure about seeing cliffs on the eastern shore, although I really hadn’t traveled up the coast there so I could have had the wrong idea. But landing in Wales because you can’t land in Dublin??? I was rather confused, then just gave up and enjoyed it. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Oh, I’m so jealous. I have ALWAYS wanted to go to Ireland. I’ve seen so many pictures, movies, slide-shows, you name it and they all just call to me.
    My husband’s family has Irish ancestry, though I don’t know much about it. But my family does as well. My sister tracked it down doing the genealogy on my grandmother’s line. I am a direct descendent of Davy Crockett and his great-grandparents (I can’t remember if its one great or two) immigrated from Ireland. The irony of the “King of the Wild Frontier” being Irish amuses me. 🙂
    I’ve made a promise to myself – one of my bucket list items you could say – that I will visit Ireland one day. 🙂
    I look forward to your future posts!

    • Jennifer Jensen says:

      Hi, Jenn, good to hear from you. Definitely keep Ireland on your bucket list, especially if it’s in your heritage! There’s something that just gets inside you that never goes away.

  4. Found you post in the WANA112 Daily. Brilliant. A whole month of Irish.

    I’ll be here. I love all things Irish. Felt the stir of my Irish genes first trip to the Emerald Isleand and returned nine times. Last time rented a converted barn in County Clare, near Ennis. Way off the beaten path. Travel the back roads and suffered more than one Irish roadblock–sheep or cattl being herded between fields.
    btw, to get our fix between visits, we rent Irish films. That way we get authentic Irish lilt and scenery.Can’t wait to read your blogs.

    • Jennifer Jensen says:

      Glad you stopped by, Judy. My problem with Irish movies is that sometimes they don’t give me my fix, they make me more homesick than before! Be sure to share some of your experiences in the comments!

  5. I saw the previews for Leap Year, but never got around to seeing it. I’ll put it on the “Blu-Rays to be bought list.”
    And for the bucket list, I also want to visit Ireland.
    Looking forward to more of all things Irish . . .

  6. Cindy says:

    Irish beer is awesome!
    Under serious note, the movie is okay.
    Cindy recently posted..Cutest baby hamsters in the world!My Profile

    • Jennifer Jensen says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Cindy. I’d agree that Irish beer is awesome, except . . . I don’t drink! Which was the one weird thing about being in Ireland – I couldn’t answer the Guiness vs. Murphys question. What’s your preference?