Debt of Gratitude

Asenath Nicholson
Chapter XXI (18) | Start of Chapter

A day and night passed here gave me a good acquaintance with the scenery of these lakes, which convinced me that, to admire Killarney beauties, they must not too hastily be hurried over. The little bare-footed girl was always with me when she could get an opportunity, and had been quite a guide to strangers on that island, and was very intelligent. But Killarney and its beauties must be left, and I bade Dinis Island a long adieu; I returned, and prepared for leaving Killarney, and have much kindness to record, as exercised towards me in the inn where I lodged, by mother and daughters. They were well paid for what they did, but it was done with so becoming a grace and such good will, that it made me feel an obligation which is a privilege to acknowledge. When I was out all night at Hyde Park, they, knowing what the walk must be even with company, were much concerned; and when night came on, sent about the town to make inquiries. Had I been a member of the family, they could not have done more. The gentlemen's telling them they had met a "crazy woman" in the gap, was all the information they could get of me until the next day.

Ireland’s Welome to the Stranger is one of the best accounts of Irish social conditions, customs, quirks and habits that you could wish for. The author, Mrs Asenath Nicholson, was an American widow who travelled extensively in Ireland on the eve of the Great Famine and meticulously observed the Irish peasantry at work and play, as well as noting their living conditions and diet. The book is also available from Kindle.