Last week I finally took a vacation in beautiful, sunny Florida. I visited family, had a four-hour lunch with a dear friend and spent time swimming, shopping and eating, eating, eating.

Then suddenly BOOM and it was over. We were back home again, flying out of a photograph in color and into one in black-and-white. 

To make matters worse I scheduled a colonoscopy a few days later. That was the opposite of fun. 

Six years ago when I had my first colonoscopy at age 50 (I admit this second one was a year overdue) I didn’t think it was as bad as everyone said it’d be.

This time was different. Without going into detail I didn’t sleep a wink. The good news is that (1) once the anesthesia kicks in it’s the best nap you’ll ever have and (2) I got the “all clear” and that’s what you want to hear.

Once I got home I was exhausted, both emotionally and physically, still dealing with the “effects” of the delicious potion they make you drink. So I do what I always do when I’m not feeling well and not quite up to reading a good book. I watch a good movie. 

And, of course, my movie of choice is usually a classic.

I noticed that Netflix offers on “Instant” the 1952 American romantic-comedy-drama film The Quiet Man, a beautifully photographed movie set in the countryside outside of Dublin, Ireland and starring John Wayne, Maureen O’Hara, Barry Fitzgerald, Victor McLaglen and Ward Bond.

John Wayne stars as the American immigrant Sean Thornton

Directed by the great Director John Ford, who won an Oscar for this movie, it tells the story of American-Irish Sean Thornton (Wayne) who, in the 1920’s, decides to move back to Ireland from America to claim his family’s farm. He meets and falls in love with fiery Mary Kate Danaher (O’Hara), sister of loud-mouthed bully Squire (McLaglen). Thornton and Squire start off on the wrong foot when Thornton wins his bid over Squire’s to purchase his family farmhouse, causing Squire to refuse to allow Thornton to marry his sister (per Irish custom.)

Unfamiliar with Irish customs, Thornton proclaims to Mary Kate that he doesn’t need or care about her dowry to marry her, but to Mary Kate the dowry means independence and pride. She insists she must have it to consummate their marriage. She calls Thornton a coward for not further confronting her brother, and despite living together as man-and-wife they grow apart.

What ensues is a tale filled with Irish tradition, a strong sense of community, loyal friendships and a true love set against a backdrop of characters that will have you in stitches and wishing you lived in the rolling foothills near Dublin.

The Dublin countryside provides a backdrop for the drama.

The Quiet Man is one of those movies that lift your spirits. Being more character driven than today’s audiences are used to, the pace may seem slow, but I think it’s a perfect movie.  Nominated for seven Academy Awards, this gorgeous film will leave you either wanting to book a vacation to Ireland or yearning to become an Irishman. 

The Quiet Man - (1952, NR, 2 hours, 9 minutes)

Cathy Chester blogs at An Empowered Spirit, which won third prize in Healthline’s Best Health Blog Contest in 2014, was named #2 of the “Top 10 Social HealthMakers in MS” by Sharecare “ and received a nomination for the past 3 years as WEGO Health’s Best in Show Blog. She is a contributor for The Huffington Post as well as a blogger for and Boomeon. Her work has appeared in numerous publications including Midlife Boulevard, BetterAfter50, Erma Bombecks’ Writers Circle, The Friendship Circle and Woman at Woodstock.