Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.
Time to read
2 minutes
Read so far

First trip to Europe brings a new perspective on life

Posted in:

A Closer Look

Walt Disney was right.

It is a small world after all. That’s one of the first lessons we learned right after landing at the Dublin International Airport.

On our first-ever trip across the Atlantic, we climbed off the Boeing 767 wide-eyed and eager to learn about this land our ancesters left three to five generations ago — and learn we did.

We saw so many unique places and interesting people, and sampled some excellent food, beer, whiskey and wine on our first-ever trip to Ireland.

The first, and most important thing we learned was the Irish people lov e America, and love Americans. There was always a friendly smile and nod whenever we’d stop for directions or an explanation.

They also love American food. Hot dogs, hamburgers, french fries, Coca-Cola and Doritos could be found just about everywhere.

It seemed every place we turned, we found another face, phrase or place that reminded us of home.

We also learned a lot about the history of this much fought-ove r island. I’m still amazed at how many different countries have tried to inv ade or conquer this little North Atlantic rock of a country. You’d think the landscape was lined with silver and gold and not the chunks of granite and patches of grass that dot the countryside. Don’t get me wrong. It’s a beautiful country. Made even better, in my opinion, by the fact that you can drive from east coast to west coast in just a few hours.

We also got to know a few Hartington folks we’ve been aquainted with for nearly 30 years, but had never really gotten to truly know until last week.

One of those folks, Lee Carl, will tell you that his trip to Ireland was truly the trip of a lifetime. This was his second trip to the Emerald Isle and had he not been delayed in Denver for three days, we were planning to use his knowledge of the country to help guide us around.

Ireland is an easy place to get to know people, though, so we w ere fine on our own.

We were constantly amazed at the incredible number of similarities between the U.S. and Europe.

Our tour guide complained about the rural-urban divide in his country where the legislators thought the world ended at the Dublin city limits. That’s quite a familiar tune to Nebraskans who are convinced that our state leaders only care about Lincoln and Omaha.

The current American issues are also big issues in Ireland. Inflation, high fuel prices, people not wanting to go back to low wage jobs after the pandemic — these are all big issues both in Nebr aska and in Europe.

We read either the Times of London or the Irish Times almost every day on our trip. The headlines in these newspapers sounded all too familiar.

People were concerned about inflation and how it was forcing them to tighten their budgets. The high cost of energy because of Russia’s war on Ukraine also had people on edge, especially with winter fast approaching — all important issues on both sides of the Atlantic.

We’ll share more about in the coming weeks about the adventure of a lifetime, like possibly kissing the Blarney Stone.

Yes, it is a small world after all.

Rob Dump

Cedar County News