10/03/2009 09:55 PM

"I feel like I'm one of you, my ancestors came from Galway bay."

So said the middle-aged American woman on the 10.45 train from Galway to Dublin.

God bless Americans! Her sweet account of her heritage got a major conversation going with a bunch of Dublin women returning from a girls week out in Galway.

"I bet you all come from large families," she said.

"I'm one of ten," said the Dublin woman.

"I'm one of seven," said another.

"I'm one of one," said the third to great laughter.

There is something about Americans in Ireland. They bring the Irish out of themselves.The whole way to Dublin there was laughter, craic and even ceol, as one of the Dublin women gave us "Molly Malone."

Now try and imagine a similar scene on Amtrak or the Long Island Railroad, where strangers meet in their thousands every day. Not likely.

But it took the yank to break the ice, the innocence of her declaration that she was as Irish as them and her folks, who came from Galway bay.

God bless you, Galway girl, you made sure a long trip from Ireland's western outpost to the capital city was full of fun, craic and song.

And the American made it happen.