We started the weekly Letter from Ireland ALL the way back in June, 2013 – which makes us 5 Years Old as of the date this post was published! Here we share just 5 of our (and your) favourite letters down through those years.
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Céad Míle Fáilte – and welcome to this week’s Letter from Ireland. How are things going in your part of the world today? We’re enjoying an early summer here in Ireland. It’s always nice when warm weather coincides with the longest days of the year. By the middle of this month the light should remain until after 11 p.m. each evening. Magic!
I’m sipping on a cup of Barry’s tea as I write – and I do hope you’ll join me now with a cup of whatever you fancy as we start into today’s letter.
As I mentioned last week, the 3rd of June sees the fifth anniversary of your “Letter from Ireland”!
From that very first letter back in 2013, we’ve sent a letter out each week, compiled three books of letters, started a podcast based around these letters and set up a youtube channels for videos. Phew! Thank you so much for your support, feedback and stories down through these years – it really means a lot to us.
I thought we’d share five letters with you today – each one taken from a different year over the past five. These are a mixture of some of our own favourites, your choices, as well as letters that have a special significance for us. Do you have a favourite Letter from Ireland of your own? Do comment below and tell us – we’d love to hear!
Way back in 2013, we were all trying to figure out what it meant to be of Irish descent – but not living on the island of Ireland. So, we put the question to our readers, compiled the responses – and wrote and delivered the following letter to the President of Ireland on behalf of our letter readers:
While there are few people in the world today who speak the Irish language from day to day, it is a well-kept secret that we all speak Irish in Ireland – just using English words!
The Irish language is buried in so many of the expressions, places and surnames that we use – and much about Irish culture and tradition that you and I admire today was forged at a time when the people on this island spoke Irish in their everyday work and play.
This letter from 2014 tries to capture just some of those expressions – and asks: “Is there room for the Irish Language in Your life?”
Emigration has been a continuous feature of our small island down through the centuries. One of the earliest accounts of an early Irish Emigrant Explorer was that of Saint Brendan. In this letter from 2015, Mike talks about his own personal “run-ins” with the legacy of this intriguing man:
This letter from 2016 captures the story of an Irish woman who was brought up through the horrors of the Irish famine in the mid 1800s, but went on to become one of the leading scientific writers of our times. Her story reminds us of the Irish characteristic of finding hope through adversity – looking to build a better future while remembering our past.
In 2017 we started the “spoken” Letter from Ireland with the Letter from Ireland Podcast. Our most popular episode was this one – and it is easy to see why. In the “Spoken” Letter from Ireland, we caught up with a modern-day Irish Bard – asked about his training, his poetry – and we even got him to compose an Ancestral poem for one of our readers. Got to be one of our favourites too! See what you think:
That’s it for this special fifth anniversary of the Letter from Ireland. Thank you so much for your support and encouragement over the past five years. Let us finish by asking: Would you like us to write about a specific topic in a future Letter from Ireland? If so, do let me know below.
We do look forward to you joining us again next week – and over the NEXT five years! Would you like to receive a free Letter from Ireland of your own each week? Just click here to sign up today.
Slán for now, Mike & Carina.
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