Welcome to Ballymena, Ireland.
No, I didn't get to go, darn it.
As usual, I stayed home with my boys and our peanut bitter--whoops, did that slip out?-- that's peanut butter sandwiches, while my husband toured around northern Ireland, solving the problems of the tire world, visiting with tons of sheep, and eating interesting breakfasts like this.
So what did he bring me back?
Just the above two photos, plus this blurry one here.
And an amazing coincidence. Allow me to explain.
When I tried to give Todd the third degree about Ballymena, Michelin's home away from home in northern Ireland, he claimed not to know too much. "I was working the whole time, Beck," he said. (Can't you hear the violins playing?)
Then I asked him my standard question, the one that shows I'm a glutton for punishment: "Did you have any good meals while you were there?"
He suddenly snapped out of his jet lag.
"THAT'S RIGHT! I ALMOST FORGOT!" Then he told me this story:
One night the mayor of Ballymena hosted his group for dinner and a tour of the town. One of the stops was the town's museum/cultural center. "We'll be hosting some Yanks here this fall, from our sister city in the States," the mayor said. "They'll perform on this very stage."
To make a long story short, it turns out that the sister city was MOREHEAD, KENTUCKY!
If you're wondering why I'm shouting at you and waving my arms around, the town of Morehead is just a half hour drive from my entire extended family! That's shocking enough, but get this, it turns out that my cousin Adam is one of the Yanks performing! Can you believe that?
Just last week, three musicians and six dancers from Ballymena traveled to Kentucky to perform at the Kentucky Center for Traditional Music at Morehead University, and next month Adam and three other selected musicians will be headed for Ireland to play there.
Isn't that crazy? What a small world we live in!
It's also crazy for me because I still think of Adam as this little guy beside my slightly milk-drunk baby.
Not this full grown man with the scruffy chin, singing and playing the fiddle at our reunion this summer.
I suppose I should stop living in yesteryear.
As you might have noticed from the reunion post, Adam is truly talented. Hop over to his myspace page and listen to his music.
He's the handsome dude on the far left.
I'd love to end this post with a video showing off Adam's gorgeous voice, but I couldn't find one on youtube. (Adam, dear, get on that, would you? :))
So let's enjoy a little Riverdance, shall we?
Have a wonderful weekend, y'all!