As I look over the lessons I’ve learned from the most inspirational people in my life, I notice they all have one thing in common: they have found their niche – that place where their passion, love and deep gratitude for everything around them fills their every day.  There may be no greater story for this than that of Desmond Murray.

I’d gone off on my own to explore Italy, hoping to escape the drudgery I’d allowed life to become and filled with romantic notions of hiding away for awhile in some tiny Italian village.  Ireland happened simply because it was cheaper to fly to Dublin, first – then on to Italy: a direct flight from the US Rome nearing a ridiculous price.  With an internet deal-of-the-day, I was suddenly spending 3 nights in Ireland for the price of a plane ticket, before heading on to Rome to for all that intended eating, praying and loving.

I wandered around Dublin for a couple really fascinating days and, on the 3rd day, decided to get out of town.  I’d picked up a brochure for The Galway Tour Company and, though maladjusted and jet lagged, I still found cause to hop a 5:30 am tour bus the next morning.

Enter Desmond Murray.  When I’d dreamed of meeting a man overseas, little did I know the man who’d still bring a smile to my face a year later would be an 80-something year old tour bus driver.

Born and raised near Galway, Desmond was as enchanting and enthusiastic as they come.  Steering a large bus fearlessly down narrow, far-from-paved roads, Desmond had stories about every nook, piece of gravel, seascape and magnificent castle we encountered.  Joking that he’d led more people to God, desperately praying for their lives as he drove, than a priest ever could, Desmond’s sense of humor was sharp, getting through even to those who barely spoke English.  Desmond loved what he did, loved his homeland and showed it off with such pride – the day was one of absolute awe.

By the end of the day, Desmond had convinced each and every lady on the trip to kiss him, name her first child after him and had created a deep place for Ireland in each of our hearts.  The fact that he is just as memorable as the mesmerizing landscape speaks volumes about this man, the spunk and joy he possesses absolutely contagious.  I hope to return to Ireland one day, soon, simply to live this day all over again.  Deep gratitude, Desmond!

5 thoughts on “Inspire

  1. Great post! I was in Ireland in September of this year, and wish I’d seen this before I went, as I spent three days in Galway, but without taking a tour. I plan to go back relatively soon, to stay for a while, and will definitely see if Desmond is still driving a bus….

    Thanks for a great story, and, a possible future friend….


    1. The west coast is the most beautiful place I’ve seen on the planet: the Cliffs of Mohr area, Loophead and a little town called Kilkee. Well worth checking out. If you need tips on places to stay, let me know. There’s some great Air BNB deals.

      1. Thanks for the tip(s); I had planned to see the Cliffs, and Loophead, but, sadly, got ill & had to leave for home earlier than expected. I will DEFINITELY remember to find Kilkee; it sounds like exactly the kind of place I am seeking to stay awhile….

        I’ll remember Desmond, too…. so, thanks again….

  2. Aw, this was a really nice post. Taking a few minutes and
    actual effort to generate a superb article… but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and never manage to get anything done.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s