Ireland, Part I ~ Beginning in the North

By Andrea Cleghorn

The first time I went to Ireland was in 1976, at the end of a six-month, off-season trip to the Continent. The trip had become hard work: I was tired of my three shirts and three sweaters and trying to find radiators that could dry a pair of jeans overnight. I was traveling by train with a boxy, not-ergonomic backpack that could be carried like a suitcase; the polyester skirt and basic black dress had long ago been jettisoned to lighten my load.

Click this link to view a 22-page album of Andrea Cleghorn’s pictures from Northern Ireland – Images of Ireland – Part 1

In Ireland, I was happy to eavesdrop in restaurants, fully understand directions, and read street signs. Even before the euro standardized international currency, Irish money seemed more straightforward, without an impatient or aggressively helpful salesperson grabbing coins out of my hand while I mentally tallied the bill.

The Peepers Are Calling ~ It’s Spring!

By Abby Hafer

In New England, one of the surest signs of spring is not a sight, but a sound. The sound of peepers. Groundhog Day is such a non-starter for us as an indicator of spring that it borders on hilarious. In fact, I have often recovered my February 2 newspaper from a melting snow bank some months later. Early flowers like snowdrops and crocuses, welcome though they are, are completely unreliable as signs of spring as they too often get buried in snow. But by the time that the sound of peepers fills the air, we are on our way.

Teardown Blues

By Ginni Spencer

I live in a town with a long colonial history – it was first incorporated in 1729. Over time, farms replaced open fields and newer farms replaced older farms. There were a couple of pretty grand hotels here once, judging from the old photos – retreats from the heat of summer for Boston’s elite. But they’re all gone now and have been since before I came here 45 years ago. So I shouldn’t be surprised that the cycle of demolition and replacement is still going on. The more modest houses built after WWII, occupied for much of my time, are now giving way to the spacious footprints demanded by millennials and their families. I don’t begrudge them that – it’s their time after all and many are built to be energy-efficient.

Steinem in Ireland: Gloria Goes Green for the First Time

By Andrea Cleghorn

When Gloria Steinem went to Ireland last summer, it was a first ever visit for this woman who has spent all her adult life traveling.

Today, on the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day right in the middle of Women’s History Month, is an opportunity to take a look at the most the world’s most high-profile feminist, author of “My Life on the Road,” but it was not til this past year that she got to the small town of Bantry in (arguably) the greenest nation on the planet.

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