I'm a bit of a closet Irishwoman. In college, I wrote a lot of term papers about Irish history, when I wasn't spending time at the Glocca Morra pub singing along with Galway man John Morrison. Heck, this Anglophile even participated in a picket outside the British Embassy on Third Avenue in New York City, urging the Brits to get out of Ireland.
In honor of those days, may I recommend a wonderful little ditty called "Tobacco Island" by Flogging Molly? It's a catchy song and you might even want a pint of stout after listening to it. Besides, who could resist the opening lyrics? "Off to hell we must sail..."
These days I lead a more countrified life, where I'd have to walk miles to find a sidewalk. And speaking of walking and Ireland, I had the privilege of working on Tom Coyne's A Course Called Ireland, released last year by Dutton/Gotham.
You don't have to be a golf fan to enjoy this book. Tom promised to walk the island in search of Ireland's best links, and he got a lot of press doing it. Golf.com even has some great pix and journal entries from his 2007 adventure.
But there was a lot of time between teeing up that he spent dodging high-speed, erratic traffic, meeting up with friends and family who flew in from the States just to walk with him, and many hours spent simply enjoying the scenic beauty of the Emerald Isle. That is, when he wasn't being rained on or eating dirt and exhaust fumes.