An American in Ireland

So, I spent a week in Ireland recently and because I’m American and feel like my opinions of anything matter, I’m drafting this letter to the President of Ireland.


Dear President Higgins,

Since it’s obvious that there is a special relationship between the United States and Ireland, I just knew you’d want some honest observations on the state of your country and some recommendations, really, to make things, well a little better, to put it bluntly (as we Americans love to do.)

  1. Limerick needs some help. It reminded me of American cities past their prime, so to speak. I don’t think I need to add anything to that. But, lovely and friendly people. I especially appreciated the Pringles dispensers in the pubs and the hotel. Well done.
  2. You all need more water in your diet. All tea and beer. There has got to be a dehydration epidemic. I’m sure of it.
  3. Let’s talk about pudding. PUDDING is a delicious snack or dessert made with milk and chocolate or sometimes other flavours (that’s cute, how I do the European spelling, right?) Pudding is not a breakfast meat and I use the word meat there kindly. While I’m on the subject, you all eat a lot of pork.
  4. Bacon. This was especially weird at the first adorable little shop where I thought I was getting bacon and eggs after a night of too many pints. It was clearly a thicker cut of what seemed like ham. Apparently, you all don’t have much streaky bacon. I suggest that you try that, straight away.
  5. Dublin was beautiful. Might I suggest that if you’re going to consistently advertise that there are 975 pubs in Dublin that there’s some requirement for them to remain OPEN when a starving, thirsty tourist is wandering the streets? Whenever you want one, you can’t find one. That seems odd.
  6. Potatoes. OK, I get it. Everyone gets it. Potatoes are important. But I ordered this lovely stew sort of dinner thing with mashed potatoes on top and it had chopped potatoes in as a vegetable and then came with a side of fries, er chips. THAT IS A LOT OF POTATO. Just saying.
  7. It appears also that everyone is a little drunk by 2 pm. I’m sure you’re aware of this. BUT, it does make for a much better tour guide on the hop on, hop off bus. Just a tip.
  8. Guinness. It’s clear that the family has done a lot for Dublin. But in all seriousness here, there is no mention of the repairing of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin or the public housing or several other things mentioned by my lovely bus tour guide whilst you’re on a tour of the Guinness “factory.”
  9. What is with the guys building sand sculptures in the streets? I don’t get it.
  10. I must, must say that I especially loved how the US Prime Minister’sAmbassador’s home is quite lovely, but unassuming and just the right size for a country that you have such a special relationship with. Also, I love that it is across the way from your home, Mr. President. And I’m dying to know if there is, in fact, a secret tunnel connecting the two.
  11. While we are on the subject, what happened to Dublin Castle? That’s not really a castle. I mean, an American tourist wants to see a CASTLE. Here, Limerick did it better, fyi. And when they wanted to shit on the British, they just built public housing right there on the grounds. Screw it. Also, why is there NO AMERICAN FLAG in the courtyard of the palace there? Clearly, those were European countries, or something (I’m American and not great at flag recall), but it would have been NICE.
  12. Lastly, I think it’s time to let go of the British Oppression a bit. I mean, I’m an American. I get it. We had the whole Revolution, too, and threw their damn tea in the water. But, when the kind lady tour guide reminded us that the fearless child involved in the rebellion was not imprisoned at the prison where whole families shared only one candle because he was KILLED because the British KILLED children, that might be a bit much. It might be time to let bygones be bygones.
  13. You do make pretty good pizza.
  14. Lastly, the Long Room in the Old Library at Trinity College was the most spectacular thing I’ve ever seen. A suggestion: a super secret kind of tour for us librarian types. That would be something. :)
  15. Thanks, though, for that pre-clearance bit leaving Ireland. That was actually super nice.

If you’d like to talk about any of these items, Mr. President, or like make me an ambassador of things, I’d be happy to.

With much love and friendship,


PS. I’m totally half Irish. One of the bus drivers could tell because I sassed him. And then he said, “Oh, Jesus Christ.” I think that sums me up perfectly from a stranger.

PPS. When you talk to the Queen next, can you please tell her that this American is a little concerned with the British work ethic? Thank you, kindly.


This is obviously more than a little tongue in cheek. I’ve wanted to go to Ireland ever since I was a little girl and every single moment was amazing. Thanks for reading, commenting, tweeting, and looking at my pictures, too.

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2 Responses to “An American in Ireland”

  1. DR Ramos says:

    Sweet and funny. Thanks for sharing your trip and your observations.

    Pints, potatoes & pudding forever!

  2. Lou Lange says:

    Loved your letter my dear! Funny, sassy, and so full of wonder.
    To paraphrase – Erin Go Bragh-less…LOL