'In Boston I never saw my wife or son due to daily six-hour commute - so we bought a farm in Ireland'
With a rise in people leaving the US to come to rural Ireland, Christian Connors explains why he and his family decided to uproot their life and move to a farm in Sligo
I've been a contracts negotiator for the past 25 years. For the last six years I was a contracts manager for the company's transportation department.
Life was hectic. From Monday to Friday I commuted three hours each way into Boston. The sacrifice was not seeing my wife Jodi and my son Tristan (11) much during the week. We lived in a conservation area in New Hampshire - 90km north of Boston - which was good for Tristan. But I felt I was missing out with my boy.
Jodi and I met in Boston, we got married in 2005 and then Tristan came along. For years we've been looking for something different. We looked at France - we'd actually found a place in France - but as we looked further into it, there was a pull towards Ireland.
Throughout our lives and in all the countries we'd travelled to, we had never travelled to Ireland. Then this place - Ballaghboy Lodge Farm at Ballinafad in Co Sligo - popped up. The selling agent, Joe Brady of REA Estate Agents in Carrick-on-Shannon, said he is seeing more and more people from the US who want to move to rural Ireland (according to a nationwide survey by the Real Estate Alliance, 22pc of overseas enquiries about Irish property in 2017 came from the US).
Our reasons for wanting to purchase the farm were similar to the original owners Karen and Eddie Litton's rationale when they sought it out and created it in 2004.
The view from the property was enchanting and it has such a rich heritage. It's been a 15-year journey getting here. We just clicked with this place.
Jodi had a feeling that it was meant to be and now we live here even though we'd never been before we came to look at the house, which has become our home.
Over the years Jodi and I enjoyed travelling and experiencing other cultures. We loved the culture of people coming together over a meal and having conversations about likes and dislikes. You don't really get that in the US, where people would linger over a meal.