My first few weeks in this unbelievably welcoming country have been a whirlwind. From getting adjusted to the time zone, to sight-seeing, to narrowly avoiding being hit by cars driving on the opposite sides of the road, to taking tours, to having tea, tea, and more tea, Dublin has so much to offer. Being in a new country for the first time has a way of making time fly by, yet at the same time be totally action-packed, rich with experiences and adventures.
Once I got a chance to settle in a bit, get used to the public transit system, and finally get a handle on the city's layout, it was time to start my internship. As a freshly graduated college kid, I am happy to be at a small organization, where I can be hands-on, contribute, and learn from my boss/mentor.
Being the one who started and built the organization branch from the ground up about a decade ago, my boss does just about everything and then some. She is one cool lady. Being in an Irish workplace setting is a wee bit different than being in an American workplace. Before we were sent off into the Irish world of professionalism, we were briefed and warned of some of the culture shock we might encounter. The most notable differences came to the surface within the first few days of being there. I can only speak on behalf of my own experience, but a lot of the differences we were informed of rang true.
Irish people are generally super friendly and laid back. That being said, it is apparent that there is no clear-cut hierarchical structure in the office. Yes, the boss is the boss, but there seems to be a much more "all hands on deck" vibe. No task is too small for any employee, and no task is completely and totally undoable for any employee. And no matter how busy you may be, there is ALWAYS time for a chat and a cuppa tea.
But it’s not all work and no play over here. In my first few weekends I’ve already gotten to explore a few of Ireland’s hot spots. A few of my favorites so far have been the Guinness tour, Dun Laoghaire, the Bog of Frogs trail path in Howth, and a variety of pubs (all with live music of course). The Guinness tour was one of the first things I checked off on my laundry list of things to do, and it was everything I hoped it would be and more. There’s nothing quite like sipping on a fresh pint of the dark stuff at the top of the biggest pint glass in the world with a 360 view of the whole city. Not to mention the friendly people you meet along the way, and the surprise Irish dancing that apparently every waiter and waitress are fully trained to do every hour on the hour.
As amazing as Guinness was, I didn’t know what I was in for when it came to hiking around Howth’s stunning cliffs. That was an experience I won’t soon forget for many reasons, among those being: a “12k trail loop” is a lot more challenging than my roommates and I decided it would be…three and a half hours before we finally finished said journey. However, the sunburn, sore legs, and borderline dehydration was 100% worth it for those views. I doubt I will ever see greener greens or bluer blues than I did out there. My pedestal image of Ireland is starting to prove to be real and even better than I had ever imagined.
Cheers to the continuation of the journey!
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<p><span style="font-size:11.0pt"><span style="font-family:"Calibri",sans-serif"><span style="color:#212121">Welcome to an inside look at my adventures abroad this Summer! I'm originally from the California Bay Area, and recently graduated as a student-athlete from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. Here's to a two-month adventure in Dublin! </span></span></span></p>