Saturday, 7 September 2013

No country for young men

As regular readers may have noticed (yes all two of you), our inspiration to write has been a little low since our return home.

Making hay while the sun shines -- well cutting the lawn in any case
Hard at it...
One explanation for this could be due to the very fact that we are back home and with it the associated ‘comforts’. Now we must qualify that these comforts, such as free board and food, are purely because the 'powers-that-be' understand we’re only meant to be here for a short stop; they’re not indefinite nor would we expect them to be. The fact also that it’s our first trip back after our longest stint away – specifically for a family wedding – has meant that it has been hard, in a nice way, to find as much ‘thinking time’ as we tend to do in Colombia. People to catch up with, events to attend, and such like – you know how it is.

It must also be said that we’ve been enjoying the longer daylight hours that you get in Ireland at this time of the year – something we do miss when in Colombia (see previous post Plus – and we’re not just marketing the homeland here – the weather has actually been relatively good with little rain for the month or so we’ve been about thus far.

Throw in the odd radio interview (we have to market ourselves – listen at, letters to newspapers* and trying to sort out the ridiculous paper work in a bid to secure a more ‘stable’ return to Colombia while at the same time not really knowing if it’s the ‘right’ move, and it’s pretty understandable that the ‘Wrong Way’ creative juices have dried up somewhat, temporarily as it may be (or maybe not?).

Yet, another factor, perhaps, in all of this is ‘familiarity breeding contempt’. The land we know – and love in many ways – so well rarely changes. From a physical point-of-view this is a good thing; but when it comes to the mindset of some of the people, it can become tiring. This is something that is especially common to rural areas as they have a more elderly population compared to the cities and commuter belts.

However it’s not exclusively rural or elderly – Ireland as a country has often been slow, averse even, to change. We may travel the globe and populate its four corners but back on the island we tend to maintain the status quo, with just some minor, superficial tweaks every now and again.
Back with a vengeance -- the grey skies and rain
Back to normality; the rain has arrived

There’s a bit of an uproar when another scandal is revealed about our politicians or bankers or whoever, but it generally goes away again as quickly as it came on us. And at election time we tend to have the same sorry bunch looking up at us from the ballot paper – in a similar mould to previous candidates if not the same people – and we take pity on them, buying into them once again.

You can only read, listen and write about all this for so long until it just beats you with frustration and bleeds you dry.

So Ireland now (at least the rural areas), as it was before, is no country for young men it would appear.

Maybe, just maybe, we’ll find something to inspire us in that.

* Surprise, surprise but we like a newspaper rant every now and again, slightly edited from the original as this may be:

For an earlier piece on Ireland and emigration, see On the road again, naturally


  1. Cumbria is similar! My career took a nose-dive - but then having children also didn't help. But I think rural areas like that make you get more creative about what you actually do - I've interviewed people who have changed from being well paid professionals to self-employed creative types - but far more fulfilled.

    Good luck with finding your inspiration!

    1. Thanks Sarah!

      No there are certainly many good points about things here. Just at this moment in time 'we' still have wanderlust -- and of course being single helps in that too!

      Cheers for reading and taking the time to comment.

  2. If I hadn't kids I'd be gone. The politicians and bankers and just the way the poorer (working class people) are treated in this Country really wrecks my head.

    1. Well as the 'D:Ream' song went, 'things can only get better'. Although considering the the way our country is 'managed' (or mismanaged) let's not hold our breath on that one...