"Roughing it" ~ to me ~ means "no room service after 10pm." It was, therefore, a battle, of sorts, within me, to choose between the allure of a week of spiritual, cultural, musical, historical and joyful exploration ~ pitted against living in 400 year old, thatched roof cottages in Northern Ireland with a small assembly of strangers and a strong suggestion to set aside social media and news outlets in an attempt to build community. But I am glad I did! The food, the silence, the talks, the walks; the poets, priests, politicians, historians and troubadours that we visited and who came to visit us ~ all of them helped advance reflection, introspection, understanding and community-building ~ all the while respecting diversity. And there was plenty of time built-in for solitary walks, crafting one-to-one friendships, and exploring the geography of what is truly a magical, mystical isle.
- Dwight Lee Wolter