3 days in Leitrim (not Longford) :p

These three days, I spent my weekend in co. Leitrim. I stayed two nights in Lily and James house in Gortletteragh.

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Lily and James’ house

The question started from how did I meet Lily (and James) Doyle?

On Facebook. We joined the same facebook group: Backpacker International, that is because we have the same hobby, traveling to places outside of Indonesia. From that group, we finally know each other that we stay in Ireland but in different county.

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A perfect place to escape from crowd

The first time we met was when Ashri and I visit Sligo. Lily and James drove from Leitrim to Sligo. We strolled together to Knocknarea hill and Strandhill beach. We got to know each other by traveling together for the first time. Secondly, Lily and James visited Bray to watch the Bray Air Display. Ashri and I took Dart from our place to Bray, then, we walked to Greystone. This is the third time we met. I came to their house and stayed for two nights.

On the first day, they showed me Lough Rynn Castle and the stunning view behind the castle. There is a herb garden nearby and James was so excited to pickle some leaves and smell the herbs. Then we bought Indian halal dinner and went home.

But, the best thing is…… James’ steel-stringed light-brown Yamaha acoustic guitar! I could stay in the house only for playing guitar all day :)) We talked much about chords, (old but gold) songs until bedtime. The new thing is, instead of plucking or strumming the strings, James does unique way to play. I learned several new chords and techniques to play acoustic guitar from him. He has two guitars: acoustic and electric; I even do not have one! I envy him so much!

The next day, we stopover to James’ father (Colm) house. There is where James’ cows are. He is a livestock farmer. I watched them eating and pet the ringleader. I thought cow’s skin is furless, but, they have soft fur. Well, I think it depends on the species; the one that I pet is Aberdeen Angus. After spending three days with them, now, I could tell which one is the milky cows and which one is the meat cows (hahaha!). Thereafter, we went to Enniskillen, Northern Ireland to have a lunch in a buffet and we visited the Marble Arch Caves. Then, we stopover at a mini waterfall and went home.

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James’ cows

Last day, we visited Colm house again. We talked with Dympna (Colm’s sister), and her husband. Dympna is a very nice lady, she even kissed my cheeks when I was saying goodbye to her :)) She wished for the best results for my viva, and she hoped that I will meet my daughter and my husband soon. This is our first (and maybe last) meet, but, they treat me like a part of their family. Isn’t that sweet?

I experienced many things from this journey. Lily is so tough person, she went through the thing that I never imagine as a mother. I couldn’t tell here, but, her love for Riley is priceless. My eyes are now teary while writing this sentence. Even though, I know that she accepted all those things, I resist myself to ask many questions to her about Riley. I believe that he is there, watching you two from heaven 🙂

James is an old-fashioned person. I couldn’t believe that a western person respect more on Sapindus mukorossi (i.e. Indian washnut) or Javanese people used to call it ‘klethek’, to wash his clothes instead of detergent. He prefers to drink spring water from well instead of buying bottles of still water. He prefers to light the fire from woods, turfs, coals instead of using storage heating. I am sure that he will live very well and prosper in my grandmother’s era. He is a believer of life sustainability.

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Spring water well

Anyway, this is what I expected before I come to co. Leitrim. I really want to pet cows, light up a fireplace, experience new things that I never knew before while living in Dublin these three years. Now, I can see different lifestyles that people chose for their livings.

I used to hate traveling or leaving my comfort zone. But, then, I left my home country to a country which I never dream of before.
I used to feel insecure about having trips without my family. But, then, I traveled solo and found a new family who I never met before.
I used to think that my way is better than anyone. But, then, new people taught me unique ways to solve (basic) living problems.

Apparently, these years I lived in a (transparent) shell.


There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.
– Robert Louis Stevenson

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