The week’s theme is ancestors and here I am in the heart of my father’s ancestral home, County Galway Ireland. We landed this morning and it is so nice to be back here in the warm sunshine with breathtaking views in every direction! Lucy and Violet are here with me. As we touched down at 6am Irish time this morning my dear friend (and fellow contributor here) Shari Moraga met us at the airport with her son. They arrived here from Boulder Colorado a day ahead of us and we are planning all sorts of active fun and history (herstory) for the 10 days we have in store. This post, while tipping the proverbial iceberg of ancestors is sure to be followed up with stories with more detail this week – please stay tuned by checking in over our stay.
Plans include a visit to my father’s childhood home, with my first cousin who lives nearby at Clonbrock. Castle ffrench in Ahascragh, is where my dad grew up. Us ffrenches were one of the 14 tribes of Co Galway and there are only a few of us left. http://www.castleffrench.com/index.htm The castle that exists today was built in 1779 by my great great grand relative either uncle or grandfather. There is a lot of learning to do and at this point in my life I have become enamored with the subject. Here, in Ireland, history seems alive in the everyday. Many people tend to stay in the area (or even the exact home) as their ancestors, so sleuthing out family trees is not so hard.
My mother’s ancestral history is a little less orderly and seemingly less easy to research. When we visited my sweet cousins in Kentucky last April we were so fortunate to find a clearly spelled out document my mother had written and shared with them. That gave me a bevy of new information that got me feeling like more in-depth research could actually be pieced together in a clear trajectory allowing me a window into a part of my history that has always been foggy at best.
On top of finding more about all this newly exciting past, my sister recently told me that she is in the process of doing the DNA genomics and biotechnology testing and history building available through places like 23 and Me. This will allow me to gather some hard data on our past that will assist in knowing if the pieces discovered with other research actually fit together.
With that, I must get my sleep schedule in balance to best enjoy this land and wonderful visit.