Sunday 18 November 2018

Discarding the maple leaf for the wearing of the green

Why would a Canadian law academic who could live anywhere, come to call Ireland home? Roslyn Fuller reveals all

Roslyn Fuller.
Roslyn Fuller.

Roslyn Fuller

Given the amount of time I spend complaining about all things Irish, it can come as a bit of a shock to find out that I am, in fact, myself Irish. Not only that, but my citizenship was not an accident of birth but the result of an entirely sober choice made the far side of 30.

So, why would I, coming from Canada, a country synonymous with economic opportunity and tolerance, ever want to become Irish? First off, I like Irish people. In fact, Irish nonchalance is what convinced me to stay here in the first place. It was not the food ("At least we'll lose weight," was my initial verdict). It was not the infrastructure ("It's nice how you've kept the old trains going"). It was not the allegedly poetic Irish language, which, truth be told, sounds like something out of Mordor.

It was basically the mood that came through early on that whatever I was doing, Irish people were pretty cool with it, because Irish people are apparently pretty cool with everything. Sure, they might talk behind your back, but where I come from, talking behind other people's backs is considered perfectly normal and certainly much more polite than telling them what you think to their face.

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