Irish Heartbeat

May you always have walls for the winds, a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire, laughter to cheer you, those you love near you, and all your heart might desire. - Irish Blessing

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there’s no place like home

early morning tea on the deck with Myya, Maple View Farm ice cream, pumpkin chai candle, sunset drives with no destination, Wrightsville Beach, dunkin donuts french vanilla coffee, perusing used bookstores on a rainy day, A Southern Season, carving pumpkins, green tea with lemon and honey, UGG bedroom slippers, Dovecote, snuggled in bed listening to Christmas music, warm vanilla sugar, kale with garlic and pine nuts, decorating for the seasons at Bloom, cooking with Frank Sinatra, 12 Days of Christmas at the Carolina Inn, Sleepless in Seattle, yoga & pilates, winding country roads, Driade, the library, UGG’s/jeans/hoodie, Night Gallery, that favorite sweater, the smell of the fireplace in the crisp winter air, peppermint bark…

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After traveling through County Cork, Blarney, Kinsale, and Cobh I have a new appreciation for southern Ireland. Cobh, surrounded by beautiful blue waters, is overflowing with vibrant and colorful buildings. In addition, Cobh is the last port the Titanic departed from before sinking in the North Atlantic Ocean.

The RMS Titanic, a British passenger liner, is characterized as one of the most spectacular ships ever created. Tragically, the vessel sank on April 15, 1912 as a result of an enormous collision with an iceberg during the initial voyage from Southampton, United Kingdom to New York City, United States. Consequently, 1,502 people perished. The incident is referred to as one of the deadliest nautical calamities in modern history.

Not only was the Titanic the second of three Olympic class ocean liners maneuvered by the White Star Line, but the craft was built by the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast, Ireland. On its first and last voyage, the ship sustained 2,224 passengers and crew.

Passengers were amongst the wealthiest people in the world, as well as hundreds of emigrants from Ireland, Great Britain, Scandinavia and elsewhere. The ship was intended to be high in comfort and luxury due to the gymnasium, swimming pool, multiple libraries, restaurants and lavish cabins. However, the vessel contained innovative safety features including impermeable compartments and unassailable doors, although it was deprived of an adequate number of lifeboats to accommodate all passengers. Due to obsolete naval procedures the ship only transported enough lifeboats for 1,178 people.

On April 10, 1912, after leaving Southampton the Titanic stopped in France and Queenstown, or Cobh, in Ireland before bearing towards New York. The ship proceeded to hit an iceberg on April 14, 1912, only four days into the journey. The collision opened five of sixteen compartments to the frigid sea, and therefore, the vessel flooded gradually and ultimately wallowed. Passengers and crew members were evacuated in lifeboats, several of which were only partly filled. Over 90% of men were left aboard due to the “women and children first” protocol followed by the officers loading the lifeboats. Eventually, the Titanic’s upper decks were submerged in water, and soon after the boat snapped and the Titanic began to sink with over a thousand people remaining aboard. The Cunard liner RMS Carpathia arrived within the next two hours and rescued approximately 705 survivors.

The calamity was received with universal astonishment and indignation due to the immense amount of casualties and the authoritative/operative fiascos. As a result, both Britain and the United States generated enhancements in maritime security. The formation of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea proved to be highly significant. Several survivors were left destitute, but were aided by public sympathy and charitable bequests.

The Titanic remains on the seabed, divided in two and progressively disintegrating at a depth of 12,415 feet. Since its discovery in 1985, thousands of artifacts have been retrieved and are currently on exhibit at museums worldwide. The Titanic is possibly the most famous ship in history, commemorated by copious amounts of films, literature, exhibits, and memorials.

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Cobh was an absolutely beautiful town. Erin and I wandered off and walked along the water’s edge observing the sail boats and beautiful housing. It was amazing to see all of the bright colors and different styles of lodging in one area. The cathedral was beautiful and peaceful. We each giggled at the cute puppy barking outside of the cathedral as he impatiently waited for his owner. Erin and I read about the Titanic and searched high and low for the memorial. Cobh was the last port the Titanic stopped at before the calamity in the Northern Atlantic. Lastly, we settled in a local pub to watch some Sunday afternoon rugby. Overall, the weekend was fantastic. I feel so lucky to have been able to explore so any unique and truly beautiful places. Words cannot describe how thankful I am to Erin and her parents for providing me with this opportunity!