Lovely piece of writing on unlovely events in my homeland
Fifteen years ago, I took my new baby daughter home to my lovely, tragic Northern Ireland. It was my mother’s sixtieth birthday, and between my father, my brother, and a handful of relatives who could keep a secret (an impressive trait in rural County Derry) we planned a “This is Your Life” style surprise. It was delicious, knowing we had all swallowed the same secret, and that my all-knowing mother was completely in the dark.
The Troubles had tainted previous visits home, but this time was going to be different – no bombs, no shootings, no petrol bombs, no more girls tarred and feathered for falling in love with a boy from the other side. I found something symbolic, magical even, in returning home with a new baby girl in my arms to a new optimism fueled by The Good Friday Agreement.
It had been different four…
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