This post is being written over a course of days even more than a year after it happened. But as I sit on my porch back here in Wilkinsburg – the weather is oddly as beautiful as it was this day in Belfast. That is one of the many things of that day I am enjoying going over in my mind. Now of course I have forgotten many other things and the order that they happened in. But I am surprised about how much I remember.
Maybe that is the nature of traveling and being some place for only a day or two. So I do want to continue where I was in Belfast.
The day was very relaxed where Maeve and I got to catch up a little, and discuss the writing process. my contribution to the conversation is how much I hate doing it. Then we were around her neighborhood a bit – I got my hair cut – the women at the salon were the only English speaking people – during my whole 4 months in the UK – that I really did not understand, (except of course for D. Wayne).
I noticed in walking around that I thought that the men here seemed to look more like American men than in England and Scotland. We went to Maeve’s favorite place for lunch – Down the street and she told me more about the history of the area and how any one from there there knows who is Protestant and who is Catholic just by meeting them. I found out Maeve’s Father had been Bernadette Devlin’s campaign manager! And there were a few good stories about that.
Maeve worked well with my MS limitations. We would walk together for bits but she had a number of errands to do and was able to go off on her pace and do them while I strolled and looked at things at my pace. I am reminded of this because I think the next thing we did after lunch was go to her friend Mary and Tom’s for what we thought would be tea but turned out to be their dinner. That is why I was going from lunch then a walk then to tea. Maeve did lots of things while I did the walking part.
Their garden was the perfect place to enjoy this beautiful day, share their dinner and get a tour of their sculptural house and their daughter’s art work. And Mary gave me a Celtic Cross. It was a joy to be with Maeve and Mary in their friendship and to hear about how things were in Belfast back their respective days. Very complicated and a weird thing for the likes of me to be next to the place that I heard and saw in the news when I was growing up. I think of them as black and white and now it is in color. That may be because our TV was black and white as were newspapers and Life Magazine photos.
But we a had to run back and get dressed and party ready for Caroline to drive us to Mandela Hall and Alabama 3! My second one!