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Overseas and Off-Campus Programs Blog

Recap: Settling in to Dublin

  • Guinness Storehouse
    Guinness Storehouse
Author Name
Eli Barnes
Author Program
Ireland: Social Sciences
Program Semester and Year
Spring 2019
Student Major

We are settling in well here in Dublin. The Aparto complex is quite nice; it is great having personal showers and being so close to the action. Arthur’s Pub is only a block away, and it is a fantastic place to get a pint and hear some local music in a very cozy and casual setting. Vincenzo’s Takeaway is also a closeby, delicious option for a cheap late night snack. Container Coffee is virtually onsite, and makes a great Cappuccino. I think we all appreciate having so much great food and shopping so close, and adjusting to the city has been pretty seamless.

Our first couple weeks of classes have also been very enjoyable. Personally, I have already gained a lot from Irish Literature and Theater, particularly from analyzing Cathleen Ni Houlihan by W.B. Yeats. I haven’t had much experience engaging with theater, and even though Cathleen Ni Houlihan is a very short play, I found our discussion of the text fascinating and fruitful. I also find Paul Hollywood to be a very entertaining and interesting professor. The Irish Welfare System is also an important class, as the course material will help inform us about a crucial institution in our society. Professor Wolniak is very knowledgeable and I appreciate her constant engagement with the class. Irish Life and Cultures is also an interesting class, and I am very impressed with Professor Casey’s comprehensive knowledge of Irish History.

I think most of us have had good experiences with our first week of internships. In my internship, Friends of the Elderly, we are in a group of 5, and have enjoyed working together a lot. For our second day, our agency hosted a social club, and we had a busy but fun day meeting members of the elderly community of Dublin. We’ve already made some friends, and we all look forward to going back this coming week. We are also going to start doing weekly five to ten minute calls with members of the community, which will be a bit challenging but definitely rewarding. I know we are all going to learn a lot from our time interning.

We have also taken some delightful trips outside Dublin. Our first trip was to Howth, a lovely seaside town 30 minutes away from the city. We went on a hike along the cliffs with phenomenal views of the ocean, and afterwards me and a few friends ate at the world famous Leo Burdock Fish and Chips. We just got back from Galway, which involved a lot of spectacular cliffs and great meals. The first night, we ate at a very nice restaurant, where we had a delicious three course meal. The second day, we took a bumpy ferry to Inis Mór, and saw a several thousand-year-old fort. The beautiful views made the strong wind and rain more than worth it. I also ate the best scone I have had on the trip so far at the café. That night, me and some friends ate at Dough Boys, a very popular award-winning pizza place. It was the best pizza I have had in a long time, and it certainly lived up to the hype. On the third day, we went to the Cliffs of Moher (a.k.a. The Cliffs of Insanity). The views were quite astonishing, and some of the rock formations almost looked man-made. I also ate a beef and Guinness stew, which hit the spot. All in all, we have had a great first two weeks. I have particularly enjoyed the food so far, and I think we have all had a great time and are looking forward to the next few months.

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