The Art of Slow Travel

It takes approximately six hours to fly from New York to Ireland.

But seven days sounded more appealing.

Few societies move as quickly as Americans do.  We have allowed ourselves to be bogged down by technology.  Faster always somehow translates to better.  Yet we are physically tired. Emotionally tired.  Sleepy eyes staring at screens.

But there’s an interesting shift that has begun and continues to manifest within our communities. Many are seeking more alternative routes - turning towards yoga, meditation, and mindfulness in order to decompress and reduce the risk of burnout.

Why Breaking Tradition is So Important

Cleared of every day life, the visceral need took hold once again.  

Provisions packed, cables unplugged, atlas mapped, hats on, doors slamming.  I was ready to take on the icy cold of the east.  Guided by the horizon and hugged by the mountains.  The quietness of early Christmas morning enveloped the roads and us.  It was my first Christmas apart from the familiar warmth of family and whatever remainder of tradition we could bare to muster.

How Did I Get Here?

I could not fully wake myself up that morning. 

There was a mesmerizing monotony of the boat swaying with each cut through the dark black waves.  I was told beforehand that there is essentially zero visibility when it comes to Loch Ness.  Why I initially questioned the factuality of this remark, I do not know – for it was immediately clear that the old man was right.  It seemed strange that fresh water could present itself so ominously. The water spilled like ink away from the power of the boat with a gold tinge to the broken waves.  The normal white crest of a wave has no place in Loch Ness.

Allowing yourself to feel

The gloomy skies and the rain were exactly what I sought.  Only with this kind of weather does a quietness blanket the earth and each step becomes a little more muffled.

My hood up, the wind howled so loud around me that it was almost disorienting.  A shroud of fog so thick crept over the Cliffs of Moher, leading you to question their existence at all. Unable to ever fully visualize the precipice, my attention was caught by the tall grass and wildflowers.   The wind was partly threatening to uproot them, and partly delighting in the way they swayed and danced.  I could have watched this rendition all day, but the unfriendly weather pushed us on.  The Cliffs were simply meant to unveil themselves another day.