Probably 70% of people I have met since I moved to Waco just over a year ago tell me that they are of Irish heritage. Although, the majority of them have no clue from what county, area or even what end of Ireland, it makes me smile to see how they are so happy about it! Quick history lesson: According to a 2008 census survey 38 million Americans claimed Irish ancestry! That’s a lot of Paddy’s stateside!
I love how everyone adores the Irish. I have travelled all over the world and everywhere I go, being Irish is well received. People of course have their stereotypes of all nationalities. For example, the French are snooty, the Irish are drunks, the Italians are charmers, the Spanish are feisty, and the Chinese are extremely intelligent hard workers. As for Americans? Well there are just way too many of you to cover!
Now I’m rambling, another signature trait of being Irish! However the point of my story today is don’t stereotype! Throughout my travels, I have encountered drunken Italians, snooty Irish, charming Chinese, and feisty French.
Diversity- I love. I love meeting all kinds of people from all walks of life. I think that’s probably why I love Texas so much. So many people of different colors, shapes, sizes and backgrounds. I’m hungry to meet new people and hear their stories.
So for my first post I would like to share some of the hilarious questions and stories I have witnessed since my recent relocation to the states. These made me chuckle!
- So do ya’ll have electricity?
- Do you have McDonald’s in Ireland?
- Do ya’ll celebrate Christmas?
- What do you do for Independence Day in Ireland?
- How did you get here? Like on a boat?
- Leprechauns really don’t exist do they? Are they an extinct creature?
- You’re Irish, how are you so tan?
- Were you born with red hair?
Sometimes I like to have a little fun with people, and tell them the story of “how my grandfather was actually half leprechaun, when he passed, he left me some gold. We have a special bank in Ireland to exchange the remaining gold to real money. I hopped on a boat and spent weeks sailing the wonderful United States. I was originally red headed, pale and freckled, but I wanted to fit in in America so I tan, dye my hair and plaster myself in make-up.”
It is all in good fun though. My friends back home asked if people in Waco ‘rode horses down Main Street shooting guns.’
Although I have yet to don a pair of cowgirl boots, I’ve grown quite obsessed with Texas, or more so with the people. I moved here with suit case of clothes and that was it. Within a week, I had neighbors, colleagues and brand new friends giving me silverware, TV’s, a couch, a never used bed, end tables. Inviting me for dinners and kids birthdays, making sure I’m not homesick. The list goes on. I have never been so in awe of the generosity of people as I have with the Texans. So kudos to you lovely Texans!
As we say back home, “Go raibh mile maith agaibh!” (Thank ye very much!)
Just like electricity, airplanes and McDonalds, we do have our own language but that’s a whole other story!