Ireland, here I come!

Next week I’ll be in Ireland. I’ll be on a honeymoon. No, not mine but my son’s and his new wife’s. Her folks will also be along, as well as one of her aunts. Most people are taken aback when I tell them this, but evidently Family-moons and Buddy-moons (where the couple take friends along with them) are becoming the “IN” thing.


I’m glad. I’ve wanted to go to Ireland for years. About fifteen years ago my husband and I talked about taking a trip there where you rode horses from castle to castle. That sounded like fun, but life got in the way, and we never made the trip. This year it will be “horsepower” that takes us from castle to castle (with a few bed-and-breakfast stops in between).


A car might be more comfortable than riding a horse, but I’m not sure about driving on the opposite side of the road. We’ll see.

So will my next book be set in Ireland? I doubt it. I don’t write historicals, and I don’t see my protagonist (P.J. Benson) in the “Crows” books traveling over to Ireland. But I may change my mind once I’ve made the trip. Or the trip may stimulate my imagination to create a new set of protagonists and a new mystery.

Traveling is wonderful for the writer, both as a stimulus for ideas and for research. Oh, sure, nowadays we can virtually travel via the Internet (photos, videos, articles, and blogs), but going to a location is the best way to truly “see” a place.

There’s not only the visual, but also the sounds and smells. There’s the feel: of the road, of the linens…of the toilet papers. (I still remember how the toilet paper felt when I was in England years ago. The paper in the public “loos” felt like butcher paper.) There’s the taste of the food, the ale, or the whiskey. The degree of sunlight … if there is any sunlight. I hear it rains a lot over there. It will be interesting to see what’s shown on the television. The ease—or difficulty—of making a phone call. Will I understand the accents or the different words they use for familiar objects? We’ll be using Euros. I’ll have to learn how to convert dollars to euros…or the other way around.

Whether or not I ever write a story set in Ireland, all of these experiences add to my pool of knowledge. “Write what you know,” the so-called experts say. Well, this trip is going to add to my “know.”


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23 Responses to Ireland, here I come!

  1. Kristen says:

    Oh, congrats! I’m jealous! And re: the accents, I went to London for a weekend and got a cabbie with the thickest Cockney accent ever. After asking him to repeat something three times, he looked at me in exasperation and said, “I thought they spoke English over there!” Have fun and enjoy your trip. 🙂

    • Maris Soule says:

      Kristen, I love your story about the cabbie. That’s exactly what I’m afraid will happen, especially with my husband. He’s a little hard of hearing and has enough trouble understanding waitresses if there’s noise in the restaurant. We could have some very interesting experiences.

  2. What a wonderful opportunity! I’ve always loved traveling. My experiences in Greece and England were invaluable while writing several stories. As you say, it’s much different than the experiences you get simply watching a video. Have a great time!

  3. Paula says:

    Have a great time and drink it all in. We will miss seeing you at group until spring. Hey, I’m pretty sure you can come up with a story out of this.

  4. Linda Long says:

    I am so happy for all of you! Sounds like a wonderful idea and fantastic trip. Wish Larae and Jason would take a belated honeymoon trip and invite me along. All I can say is enjoy enjoy enjoy!!!!! 🙂

    • Maris Soule says:

      Thanks, Linda. From the pictures I’ve seen, Larae and Jason seem very happy. Who knows, maybe they will take a trip sometimes soon and invite you along. Here’s hoping.

  5. Judy Joslin says:


    Enjoy! Drink it ALL in and be safe! I hope you will be free for a day this winter in Venice so we can spend one time with you two. Sadly we don’t set up a time to reconnect while here in MI so FL is our option .

    My daughter Loved Ireland!

    Have fun! I know you will

    • Maris Soule says:

      Thanks, Judy. I do plan on having a good time. What’s great is I adore my new daughter-in-law and love her folks and aunt. We’ve spent time together in the past and had a lot of laughs. This should be quite an experience.

      And yes, this time we MUST get together while we’re in Florida.

  6. Macho Guy and I went to Ireland with another couple a number of years ago. The four of us took a customized motor trip with a guide–on our own schedule, so we didn’t have to have our luggage outside the room by 4:00 a.m. and be on a bus by 7. Lovely! I second what you and the others commented on about travel. It does inspire the imagination. My favorite part of our trip was our stay in the reputedly haunted wing of the gorgeous, luxurious and historic Dromoland Castle, a five-star hotel and country estate near Shannon ( I awoke one morning with an idea for a ghost story. Coincidence? I’m not entirely sure.

    • Maris Soule says:

      Jolana, we’ll be staying in Dromoland Castle. I have a feeling a lot of those castles have haunting stories associated with them. Should be fun. In a way I wish we had a guide (someone else driving), but this will give us plenty of freedom (probably to get lost).

  7. Diane Burton says:

    What a fun trip! You’ll have lots to share in the coming months. Enjoy.

  8. Cathy Lothamer says:

    This sounds so wonderful! I want to go on a “pride & prejudice” tour of England and see the places in the movie. I know this goofy story by heart and find it so engrossing know matter how many times I see it. Castles are definitely something I would love to see. So….take lots of pictures and we may see you in Florida! Things are moving along with my medical issues and we may be buying a motor home this year to go down after Christmas. If so, I will see you then!

  9. Melissa Keir says:

    What a fabulous trip! I’m so jealous. My husband’s family went years ago and we didn’t go. 🙁 I’m so sad we missed out.

    Enjoy and take tons of photos!

  10. Ireland! My favorite place to revisit someday. And I love the idea of your family-moon. What fun. So how about a new protag who goes one? And sleeps in a castle. And someone dies or has died there. Or…well, you’ll come up with a good plot. Have a marvelous time and enjoy every minute of it.

  11. Lucy Kubash says:

    Maybe you’ll write an Irish ghost story. I love ghost stories! Have a great trip!

  12. Danielle Forward says:

    I remember having you as a chaperone on a trip to Toronto when I was in high school. I still have the packet that you wrote about all of our adventures on that trip…..maybe a similar “book” would be a nice keepsake for the newlyweds to have from this trip!! I hope you all have a spectacular time!