I’m sure that I will have much more important things to say about Belfast later, but for now, I’d just like to talk about dancing.
Specifically how, after following the advice of a waiter at The Barking Dog (Amazing food! Go there!), we ventured into a pub to watch a traditional band play. We’ve been in Galway for weeks now, so, of course, we’ve seen plenty of music…but this was different. Standing, crushed together with the combination of locals and tourists, whether attempting to mimic the dancing or just taking in the scene, I was instantly reminded of a scene in Scarlett (the sequel to Gone With The Wind) where Scarlett is staying with relatives and first witnesses the traditional reel. Watching the people who knew what they were doing, I sympathized with the jealousy that she described watching the blur of feet in perfect rhythm to the music and desperately wishing to be a part of it.
Now, I should probably say here that Scarlett and Gone With The Wind are two of my favorite books. In fact, Scarlett O’Hara, frighteningly enough, is one of my formative literary heroines (don’t worry, Jane Eyre balances her out). So Scarlett’s journey to Ireland was one of the first things that sparked a need for me to visit someday. Leaning against the wall, catching my breath from dancing, watching the locals shout lyrics back to the band, I had to smile. Because, while I have never managed to have Scarlett’s confidence, I have, after years of longing and nostalgia for a place I had never been, managed to find myself transported into a scene from the book I read and re-read until the binding was worn.
While searching for the quote about the dancing, another passage struck me. I haven’t read this book in years, but stumbling across this quote I just marveled at how, even though I knew that Scarlett and Gone With The Wind were formative works to my worldview, even I didn’t quite realize to what extent until I re-read this passage. So, without further introduction, I present an insanely accurate summary of my expectations in romance and life in general.
“You belong with me, Scarlett, haven’t you figured that out? And the world is where we belong, all of it. We’re not home-and-hearth people. We’re the adventurers, the buccaneers, the blockade runners. Without challenge, we’re only half alive. We can go anywhere, and as long as we’re together, it will belong to us. But, my pet, we’ll never belong to it. That’s for other people, not for us.”
It seems i’ve deviated a bit from the original topic, but whatever. It’s my blog. I do what I want.