Blogging, dude… Not my thing.

Anywho, it’s Madyson. Tonight’s topic: “Home” sickness.

 T minus seven days until we fly back to the States and, as Abbi so eloquently commented today, we’d all rather hide toilets (or bathrooms, as you Americans call them) and abandon our flight home. Additionally, I just discovered that Irish keyboards are not identical to American keyboards, and spent a solid four dang minutes searching for an apostrophe.

Personally, I haven’t yet acknowledged the fact that we have only one week remaining; my brain can’t exactly wrap itself around the idea of not being in Ireland. The memories I’ve gained from this trip don’t feel like memories yet, and I’m certainly not ready for them to begin to feel as such. I’m not ready to miss the people I’ve met, I’m not ready for American accents to become the normal dialect, I’m not ready to stop being a tourist and suddenly be a native.

There are things that have happened here that I wouldn’t have experienced at home, none of us would’ve. We suddenly have all of these “remember when” moments that we didn’t come here with, and it boggles the mind to realize how much we’ve all grown over this month. In a few months we’ll all look back to Ireland and miss a home, not a mission field. I mean really, some of us have library cards here, man… How much more settled can we be?

That being said, we miss our families. We miss our best friends (shout out to my sister Kendall, I miss you more than life), our dogs (Phoebe and Diego, y’all are the best), our beds (dude… my bed…). It’s super weird. How can I be so in love with one place and miss another more than I can handle? I’ve been intensely struggling with this in between place; however, the desire to stay is currently vastly overwhelming the desire to leave.

In the spirit of loving this gorgeous land, I’ve decided to cut the morbidly depressing homesickness talk down quite a bit. New topic: Super Rad Experiences.

 So, the past few days have been quite, quite full. Upon being requested by Mikayla’s mother, the story to be shared with you all is going to be about that one time Erin and I became street musicians in Clonakilty. It’s kind of a funny story, actually.

We had some free time yesterday afternoon, and some of our lovely contacts in Dunmanway had arranged for us to have lunch and do some shopping in a little town called Clonakilty. We split off into smaller groups upon arriving, and the Erin-Madyson-Madison-Mikayla-Hannah group decided to just walk around and see where the day would take us. Well, after a while, it took us to a little “I Heart Ireland” sort of a shop. We went in (Mikayla was drawn in by the harp in the window) and struck up a conversation with Terry, the shop owner. He showed us his bedazzled guitar and he learned that Erin plays and that I sing, and requested a concert. Naturally, being confident in our musicianship, I promptly said no. However, Erin said yes, and her “yes” was much louder and much more insistent than my “no.”

He lent Erin the guitar and I followed the annoyingly eager guitarist out the door, where we sat down on the sidewalk and began performing. I got over my stage fright as soon as she started playing, and we had more fun with our music than I had ever experienced before. People stopped and tried to give us money (I’m pretty sure we earned around 3 euros) and Terry joyfully gushed to Facebook about the musicians hanging out in front of his store, and all the while we were too happy to do anything but thank God for the opportunity.

It’s memories like this that make leaving Ireland so hard. I don’t want to go a day without feeling this free, being able to spontaneously pick up a guitar and perform in the heart of a little town in front of dozens of people. This season of our lives is beautiful, and we’re all desperately clinging to this last week. We’re trying to squeeze every last laugh, every last hike, every last song, every last experience out of Ireland; we’re homesick for a place we haven’t left yet.

(Erin says hi, Isabella! She loves you to the moon and back a bajillion times, and so do we. We’ve heard so much about you and we adore ya already!)


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Update: July 12