There are moments when we suddenly discover that Ireland has got beneath our skin more than we realised. One of them happenedlast week, at dinner. It was when I noticed that for the last few bites my fork had had both potato and salad leaves on it, and further, that I didn’t mind in the slightest. This never would have been tolerated when we arrived in Ireland. If by some strange chance someone had stopped me even the same afternoon and asked me if I would ever eat potatoes and salad leaves together, I would have respectfully told them that even after crossing the ocean, there are some lines that remain uncrossed and will continue to remain uncrossed. But no one stopped, and no one asked. If they had, I may have thought about my dinner differently. As it was, it all happened without a second thought – no, nevermind the second, for it is certain that there was no thought at all. I put those things together on my fork and ate them and enjoyed the experience because it looked right. It seemed good. It was the thing to do. And by this natural reflex, it was done – long before my mind could remind my hands and taste buds that I am actually from America, the land of the free and the home of Ranch Dressing. Which is another thing… I actually can’t remember the last time I had Ranch Dressing on anything.
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