Tag Archives: Irish Countryside

When in Ireland, don’t drive like an American.

20 Jun

Well, I’m here! Yay yay yay! My mom and I flew into Dublin this morning, and we are now staying at a B&B in Glendalough, which is near Wicklow Mountains National Park. It was a very long day of traveling yesterday, but after sleeping for a solid 6 hours, I think we’re both feeling a little better.

Probably the funniest part of today has been getting used to driving on the left side of the road and having the steering wheel on the right. My mom’s been the one driving, so thankfully I haven’t been in the hot seat. However, it’s been quite an adventure. First off, since the steering wheel’s on the right, that means that the passenger seat is on the left. So when I’ve gotten into our cute little diesel rental car, it’s been strange to not have the steering wheel in front of me on the left side. At first, when my mom and I left the airport in Dublin, it didn’t seem that weird because in the beginning all the cars where going the same direction. More often than not though, I had to remind my mom to stay in the middle of our lane because she’d start drifting to the left. Thankfully, since my mom has had to get used to not driving like an American in Ireland, she’s been driving slower than usual. However, that isn’t to say that I haven’t gotten nervous. There were a few moments today when my breath would catch, but we’re still here.

Truthfully though, it hasn’t been that hard for me to remember that we’ve got to drive on the left. I just keep thinking…..opposite, opposite, opposite. However, we’ve had our share of scary moments. See, the thing about Ireland is the roads are really narrow and many of the lines separating the lanes are pretty faded. Therefore, relying on the line in the middle of the road isn’t too smart. We’ve just been hugging the left shoulder of the road. However, on the super narrow roads, especially when a car is coming from the opposite direction, it seriously looks like the other car is just going to plow right into us. We can only hope that there aren’t a set of Americans coming from either direction, because then we might be in a bit of trouble!

Tuesday’s Travel Tunes: Flogging Molly!

19 Jun

Since I’m leaving for Ireland today, I figured that the only music that would fit for today would be the ever so wonderful Flogging Molly. Don’t you agree? Enjoy!

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post, especially since it will be coming to you all the way from Ireland! Woohoo! 🙂

 

Ireland tomorrow!

18 Jun

Oh my gosh!!!! I leave for Ireland….TOMORROW. I woke up this morning with a huge grin on my face and started jumping around like a kid on Christmas morning because I realized that tomorrow is the big day!!!!

I’m spending today getting last-minute things together and going over and over my lists of necessities to hopefully not forget anything. However, the great thing is that most anything I forget in terms of little things can be bought over there, which is definitely a relief. Packing always seems to be super stressful, and even though packing for Ireland hasn’t been any less stressful, my excitement today is overshadowing the stress and nervousness, which is a definite plus.

I will be in Ireland for a total of 5 weeks. The first week will be spent traveling around the Irish countryside with my mom, i.e. a chance for both of us to get a huge gulp of Ireland at the same time. I’m excited that my mom will be coming along for a week to travel with me. That way I can get used to things and settled into the Irish culture before I begin taking courses in Galway for the following 4 weeks. Also, there’s no way I could not share my first Ireland experience with my mom. She loves to travel as much as I do, and it will be the first time in Ireland for the both of us. Ah, excitement! As I said previously, we’re going to be spending the majority of our time around the Irish countryside since it is rumored to be completely gorgeous and is the “typical Ireland” that is portrayed when most people think of Ireland. After a week of traveling with my mom, my mom will head back to the US, and I’ll stay in Galway, Ireland for 4 weeks of my study abroad program at NUIG. Even though I haven’t officially signed up for the two courses that I’ll take while in Galway, I’m hoping to take Irish Literature and Film and Gaelic Culture. How can I go to Ireland and not spend 4 weeks reading the great Irish writers like William Butler Yeats and James Joyce?! The truth of the matter is, I can’t. Therefore, it’s a pure necessity that I go to Ireland, read as many Irish writers that I can, and get course credit for it. Yep, purely magical! 🙂

So, Ireland tomorrow! Excitement! I’ll be writing one last post from the states tomorrow before flying out, but as of Wednesday, every post for the next 5 weeks will be coming to you all the way from Ireland, documenting my travels, including pictures galore, funny stories, and all the new experiences I have while living a dream of mine of living/studying in Ireland! So stay tuned!