The following is an extract from an Irish Times article in its excellent Generation Emigration series. It is written by Anya O’Sullivan. It will strike a chord with many of my blog followers.
Although being at home filled me with a very specific sort of sadness, leaving Ireland left me just as broken hearted, in a very different way. It is as if I am having a tempestuous love affair with my country. I cannot, and do not want to, break away from her. Yet, she leaves me broken hearted each time I visit, and each time I must leave. She is my home. My quiet, my strength and my blood. She is my sense of longing when I am away, and my sense of belonging upon my return. It pains me deeply to see such waves of our young folk flocking to other nations, for the opportunities they cannot find in Ireland. It is absurd that the key figures responsible for the country’s descent into the financial dregs, have not been held accountable for their actions. Like they were in Iceland, for example. The bright young minds Irish families took such time nourishing, and encouraging, are not feeding the development of our own nation. We are mainly abroad, contributing to the greater good of a different economy. We are the generation of Skype relationships with our families and friends. The long distance flights, the jet lag, the tearful goodbyes. They are all intrinsic parts of our lives.
I am back in the sweltering Brisbane heat now. The Australian summer is in full swing. When I look out my window all I can see are blue skies. But, there is something missing. An ache in my heart that no communication via technology will cure. A hug from my Mum, a spontaneous visit from a friend, a train ride to see my niece and nephews. It’s the little things you miss.
Ireland, you may not be in a position to give me everything I want from life right now. But, I hope to be back. Please, sort out your economic situation so those of us migrants that want to return home, can.
This is what brought many of our forefathers to the US particularly Oregon and Idaho in the 19th. century.
(Source: Erin go Bragh Facebook page)
There is an interesting study on the Irish in London here:
Weeshie Fogathy posted the following letter on his Terrace Talk page; Maybe one of listowelconnection blog followers could help.
Dear Mr Fogarty,
I am leading a research project on the history of occupational therapy in Ireland at the University of Limerick (I think that you might have spoken to my colleague, Dr Katie Robinson, briefly a year or so ago). A couple of years ago one of my PhD students, Brid Dunne, “stumbled” across the work of Eamonn O’Sullivan (whose early contribution to the development of occupational therapy was previously unknown in contemporary Irish occupational therapy). Since then we have being undertaking research on Dr O’Sullivan’s work (this includes an analysis of his book as well as archival research in the St Finan’s archive in Tralee Library). We are of course familiar with your book (which sits on my desk) and with the material in the Croke Park archive. I am contacting you at this point as we are wondering if there are any other sources that we should contact/examine in order to gain greater insights into Dr Sullivan’s life and his influences. For example, we are especially interested in the fact that one of the international pioneers of occupational therapy, Dr William Rush Dunton (who continues to be revered in American occupational therapy, unlike O’Sullivan who has been forgotten) wrote the forward to his book. We have no idea how they met/knew each other. We assume that they might have met at international psychiatric conferences and/or perhaps when O’Sullivan and the Kerry team visited the US. We would also like to know about some of Dr O’Sullivan’s other early influences which led him to develop one of the first occupational therapy departments in Ireland. We are wondering, for example, if you have contact with any members of his family (we know that one of his sons was/is living in the UK). We would greatly appreciate any suggestions you might have.
You may be interested to know that we have given several presentations (both national and international) on Dr O’Sullivan’s contribution to occupational therapy and hope that in the future the full extent of his pioneering input to our profession will be acknowledged and appreciated.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Another long shot…..
Would anyone have any idea of the whereabouts of the old roll books from Tullamore National School? This is Tullamore outside Listowel and the records we are looking for date back to the mid 1870s. The man behind the enquiry has looked in all the obvious places e.g. Dept of Education, County Library, nearby schools….