Oh! Thank heaven to be away from it all!

From Flann O’Brien’s (as Lir O’Connor) I’m Telling You No Lie! – collected in The Short Fiction of Flann O’Brien

Or perhaps it is because—and here, I believe, we are getting nearer to the truth—the colours of the creature have awakened in me a feeling that I had thought was long since dead. For, whenever I hear a few bars from an old Irish song or have a few glasses of an old Irish whiskey my thoughts go out across oceans and continents to the land where I was born. Through the swirling mists I can picture a little thatched, whitewashed crubeen on the side of a hill. Leaning over the half-door, a leather-faced bonnav-dealer puffs away at his blackened old cruiskeen lawn as he gazes down thoughtfully into the valley. Through the smoky twilight within I see his aged help-meet, or colleen bawn, crouching over the turf fire stirring away at her three-legged poteen of carrageen, pausing now and then to gather an odd sad air from her harpeen. With a heart too full for words I reflect that this is my country, and that these people are my own kith and kin, and something like a prayer escapes me as I sob: “Oh! Thank heaven to be away from it all!”

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