Conversible Coast Guard

Saying good morning to police men, laboring men, women, and children, and passing on, a resolute man interrupted me by "Let me inquire are you a foreigner? I am likewise a stranger here, a coast-guard; and did you ever see or hear anything like Kerry? The people jabbering like blackbirds, and these wild rocks and mountains, the most frightful, ma'am. I'm from the north; and where are you going?" "To O'Connell's, sir." "And there you'll find the hospitality; but be sure you take the new road, it's the smoothest under foot. And I wish I was going too; but I'm stationed here, and so I can't go with you; stationed here to guard the coast against smugglers, do ye understand?" There was something peculiar in this man's appearance; he seemed to have caught the wildness of the scenery around him, or his occupation had given him that watchful restlessness that made me feel uneasy in his presence, and I was relieved when he said, "I must not walk any further with you, ma'am."

I was just settling into a quiescent state, when from behind me one called out, running at full speed, "Pardon me, lady, you are from New York; you never heard of a dress-maker by the name of Roan, a daughter of mine, who has not written me in nearly two years, and isn't it in Greenwich street she stops?"

"I do not, sir, recollect having the honor of her acquaintance." "I'm quite sorry, ma'am, that business takes me out of town; I would take my carriage, and carry you to Derrynane. That's the place! And ye'll not return to-day, nor to-morrow. Keep the new road, ma'am, and the Almighty God go with you."

Read "Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger" at your leisure

Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger

Read Ireland's Welcome to the Stranger at your leisure and help support this free Irish library.

This book cannot be recommended highly enough to those interested in Irish social history. The author, Mrs Asenath Nicholson, travelled from her native America to assess the condition of the poor in Ireland during the mid 1840s. Her journey took her through the counties of Dublin, Wicklow, Wexford, Tipperary, Cork, Galway, Mayo, Sligo, Cork, Kerry, as well as parts of King's County (now Offaly) and Queen's County (now Laois).

The text of this new edition has professionally been reset and an index added to the paperback.


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