The past is still with us. We’ve all emerged from events that go back thousands of years, bringing to each of us a long, long story. Those stories, though deeply rooted in time, are sometimes accessible when we look for them. Curiosity got me going on such a search for family roots. I wanted to see Ulster, the transient home of my Scotch-Irish mother’s eighteenth-century ancestors; and I felt equally drawn to the west of Ireland, the turf of my husband’s emigrant forebears who left for America during the Great Famine. I was fortunate enough to visit both, but my pilgrimage to the latter was especially productive.