I’ve started to cull my belongings and divvy up decorative items and cook wear to the kids. My antique bedroom set will go into storage, for now, as will my antique plates, serving bowls and cutlery. Items that were precious to my Grandmother, therefore priceless to me, will be safely stored in a climate controlled building. Other items, like my clothes, jewelry and SHOES will have to be transported. I’m still torn about my books! I’ll probably bring a few that I consider mandatory reference materials and the rest of the library will be stored.

As to the clothing, my brilliant plan is to bring over two really full suitcases when I visit in May and leave it all there. Then bring two more in September, possibly even paying the extra baggage fee to take another large checked piece. I was pleasantly surprised though when I solicited bids from international shippers. For the number of boxes I would have and the exact pieces of furniture, I could actually ship the items most important to me for as little as $2000. That is incredible. Additionally, everyone was willing to be competitive with bids. I think I might be able to name my price….if it comes to that.

This year is a test year. Having never lived in the same place, we want to make sure we are compatible and that our love translates to the day to day. I can’t express how nervous and excited and terrified and ecstatic and petrified and joyful I am. To finally see him every day. To do the simple things together, like relax on the sofa after work and go to the cinema. Not to mention, plan for the future, drive up to Letterkenny to see his Mom and Sister, meet his brand-new-almost-here-any-day-now niece, go to the beach for walks, explore parts of the country I’ve never seen, TRAD music and rain.

I know many people don’t like the Irish weather, with its daily shift through the seasons, but I adore it. My first trip abroad was to Scotland when I was 15. I was moved by the infinite shades of green, and the mist. The fine, gentle mist that seemed to envelope the world. I felt protected and comforted. Wrapped in a silky mantle, my skin caressed. Where I grew up the sky stretched from horizon to horizon. Flat, open land that yawned up at the clear, bright firmament. We did have daily showers. Short spurts of moisture brought up from the Gulf. We also had Blue Northers, which I loved with every fiber of my being. I would sit on the grass watching the steady march of the approaching front, with it’s dark blue-gray vastness boiling in the atmosphere, Blue Norther and shudder with delight as the wind shifted and the temperature plummeted. I guess because I am use to weather, and not seasons, I don’t mind the mix in Ireland. Maybe I just have a deep appreciation for the green life that comes of all that rain. The lushness my body feels when it’s drenched. Of course, I could just be crazy.