On the Lamb in Ireland

In Ireland you may indeed feel that the road is rising up to meet you, but it’s more likely to seem that it’s closing in on you from the sides.

Sure, I was slightly worried about driving on the left — and shifting with my left hand — but nothing prepared me for the narrow roads. They make the most remote rural lane in America look like the autobahn.

But if you are fortunate, you’ll have a passenger in the left seat like my wife, Ann. She helpfully provided a running commentary on my speed, distance from the stone walls, and the proximity of sheep in the road.

Yes, sheep. While Ireland is covered with perfectly good places for the sheep to hang around, many of them seem to enjoy standing in the road. It’s best to keep an eye out for them. I suspect that the local farmers follow the Pottery Barn rule: you break it, you own it.

I’ve noticed that when I travel I have odd dreams. In Ireland I dreamed of hitting a sheep with my rental car, a Renault Fluence. After paying off the farmer with a handful of euros, I packed it into the trunk and brought it to a local restaurant, where like a fresh lobster plucked from the tank, the chef cooked it just to my liking. It was delicious.

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