In January of 2014, while on a search for new jewelry Artisans, one of my friends, Martin brought us to a very touristy place in Dublin, Ireland called O'Donoghue's. Now, mind you, I was in this place way back in 1981 as a tourist.
My friend, Tevis came on this trip with me. The music was playing and the place was very crowded. Martin had an early morning so he bid us adieu for the night. Of course, why would we go home?
As we were ordering another drink, we met a couple from Donegal, Angela and Peter Dunnion. Angela was celebrating her birthday. The night continued and we had so much fun with Angela and Peter that we all exchanged addresses and phone numbers and off we went home.
At the begining of February of 2014, I received a parcel from Ireland. It was from Angela Dunnion. Enclosed was the most beautiful, handmade from the bog a St. Brigid's Cross along with a note that read " We celebrate The Feast of St. Brigid on Feb. 1st. It's a tradition that we make the crosses. Sending you one. Put it in your shop/unit & it will bring you great Success in business. Hope all is well with you as we are doing fine. With all good wishes Angela Dunnion."
I immediately hung it up in my office. The following month, I was notified that I was to receive a Business Excellence Award From The Irish Echo Newspaper!
In 2015, no St. Brigid's Cross arrived because through our communication, I knew that Angela was quite ill at the time. I told her she had to get better before my visit because I was coming to Ballybofey to see her and Peter that August with my boyfriend, Jerry. She was thrilled. We made the trip and had great fun with Angela and Peter who took us all around Donegal and the visit was fabulous. Angela's health has improved and all her scans have been clean.
In 2016, another parcel arrived in February from Angela. In it was another handmade St. Brigids Cross with a note " Sending you a St. Brigids Cross. May it bring you many blessings and bring you good luck in your personal life and your business. Love to you and Jerry, Angela."
The following day, I called Angela and asked her, who makes these crosses? She explained that it was her brother, Colum in the town of Letterkenny in Donegal, Ireland. I told her I needed his address to send him a note of thanks as well...so I did.
Fast forward to today, March 19th, 2017. I went to my mailbox and there was a parcel from Letterkenny, Ireland to me. I opened the package and a hand written note from Angela's brother, Colum said "Dear Veronica, While I was making Crosses this year & sending one to a "Sister Veronica" in San Antonio, I came across your letter I got from you last year dated 14-3-16, So I am sending you a Cross this year & I hope you get it safe & that it brings you good luck and happiness. I enclose one of the many letters I get from people I send crosses, also some leaflets on St. Brigid. Best Wishes, Colum Doogan."
I nearly cried. To think that this man took the time to not only make me the cross but to send it all the way to America and I have never even met him! I immediately took a picture of all (3) St. Brigids Crosses that Colum made me over the years that hang on my office wall along with the picture of Angela, Peter, Jerry and myself while on our visit to Donegal.
Yes, I did send Colum a big Thank You note in return. How lucky am I to have met and get to know these fabulous people, The Dunnions from my many visits to such a magical country as Ireland. I look forward to meeting Colum someday soon.