Coronavirus: ‘Guilt is a familiar feeling for emigrants. Mine is worse now’

The top stories from Irish Times Abroad this week

It's a feeling familiar to many emigrants around the world – the guilt of moving away to live overseas. Our most-popular story today is from Nicola Holly, originally from Co Kerry, who emigrated to Australia over a decade ago. She explains that since the Covid-19 crisis the guilt she feels from moving abroad and leaving her family and friends in Ireland has worsened: "I worry about what news I might wake up to in the morning." Our most-read story this week is from Mark O'Toole in New York who wrote about the coronavirus pandemic becoming personal: "Pat died last Wednesday". And Dubliner Bernard Rorke, who lives in Budapest with his wife and two daughters, wrote about his father who died earlier this month: "I got the call dreaded by emigrants: my da was poorly," he says. "On lockdown in Budapest, with all direct flights between here and Dublin long since stopped, I could do nothing."

Irish backpacker Luke Davis explained how the coronavirus outbreak left him and his girlfriend trapped in New Zealand: "No work, nowhere to stay and no way home". Irish musician Kate Heneghan has told of her struggle and feeling of being "forgotten" while stuck in her cabin aboard the Ruby Princess Cruise Ship in Sydney since the outbreak of Covid-19 more than 28 days ago. And in the US, we say goodbye to the New York Irish pub Coogan's, which had to shut its doors on St Patrick's Day and won't be reopening.

In a break from coronavirus related news, Dubliner Conor McMeel studying for a PhD in computer science at Imperial College, London, was a member of the four-man team that won the final of the BBC's University Challenge on Monday.

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