Fellow Travellers

I felt like leaving home when I left the yard, but in a few minutes walk a new companion accosted me. A traveller with a stick and bundle in his hand saluted me with, "A fine day, ma'am, for walkin', beggin' your pardon; and how far may ye be travellin'?" "To the next town, sir." "And that's the way I'm a goin'; and as ye seem to be a stranger (English, I 'spose), if I can sarve ye any way, shall I take yer basket? Ye seem to be light on the fut, but the way is long before ye." "It may trouble you, sir, as you have a bundle."

"Not at all at all, ma'am. I wish 'twas twice as heavy. I always love to mind strangers, and ye'll see all the Irish so entirely. I'm a gardener, and goin' to Galway to be a steward, and do ye go to Galway, ma'am? I'll carry your basket entirely, ma'am, and get ye a good lodgin' place, sich a nice body as ye seem to be must feel quare among strangers; but ye've nothin' to fear in Ireland. Ye may travel all night, and nobody 'll touch ye, ma'am." I did not believe it then, as I do now, for I had not travelled by night alone, as I have since.

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.