In 1995 Kevin (my soon to be husband), and I traveled across the United States on a 30 day journey in a little 2 door Saturn packed to the roof. Years later, 2 children in tow, we traveled with my in-laws on a crazy camper journey to Montana and back.
How privileged I was to see the wide open expanse of our own country! And while I would gratefully travel the states again in an instant, I cannot deny the constant tugging at my heartstrings to see the countries of those who came before me. My great-grandparents, (two of whom I grew up with), came from Ireland and The Azores.
I have spent MANY hours researching names and dates and people.Years ago my dad and I started at the library on microfilm, searching for our Irish ancestors. Now I sit for endless hours on the computer, searching and hoping to find the little missing pieces of information that are undoubtedly the catalyst of an entire puzzle.
I dream of the land of my Irish roots, its green rolling hills and farms. I often wonder of the lives my ancestors led there. Were they happy?
Did they love the ocean like I do? Did they dream of America as they stared out over the steel blue waves?
Did they miss their homeland once they were here, or was America, before the turn of the century, just what they were looking for?
On my mom's side many of my ancestors are from The Azores in Portugal. They traveled to California in the late 1800's. They found work on farms in the San Francisco area. It is hard to find records for them, as they lived there during the Great Earthquake, AND they changed their name once they arrived.
My husband has visited The Azores (Sao Miguel) with his dad and brothers….also the homeland of their ancestors.
I look at the narrow streets, the villages, the farms….
I see a way of life, even now, so different from our lives.
Perhaps they were more forward-thinking than us. They have maintained the beauty of the islands, the true rustic life; yet have maintained culture and advancements as well, without spoiling the naturescape or history of these volcanic islands..
Again I wonder why they left, I wonder if they feared leaving their homeland and for many, their families. I cannot imagine leaving what we have become accustomed to. But life was different then, and I imagine leaving was a necessity for many, not a choice.
Some day I will travel to the lands of my ancestors….I will stand where they stood, I will dream where they dreamed. I will breathe in the salty air and feel the wind in my hair, and perhaps for a fleeting moment, they will be by my side.
I am participating in Europe: Simply Irresistible
Link Party over at
Pop by For a Visit!
Ireland: Free Stock Photography
The Azores: 1959 Edmund Tavares, My father in law :)