Ireland is not a well-known country in Korea at least not among young adults.
Before moving here, I used to work at Yeo-Su Expo Exhibition helping foreigners to get information about the different expo areas and dealing with local sellers. Working as a translator, gave me a better understanding of how an international business goes on and how to manage day to day tasks. At that moment I realized that it would be interesting to work in a trading company. But I need to improve my English level to do. So I was looking for a place where I could speak English and I was no short of options: Canada, England, Australia, The Philippines. But in the end I read and saw someone’s experience and pictures about Ireland in Blog. I thought it would have been nice to visit that place and that thought didn’t vanish out as many others but remained impressed in my mind like a photo. Watching the Irish movie ‘Once’ made me feel eager to know more about Dublin and its surrounding: narrow streets, red bricks building. And I did apply for ‘Working holiday visa’ in Ireland.
26th of October 2013, I arrived in Republic of Ireland.
<The first step in Ireland>
I did not plan to go to language school in Ireland. I wanted to know and speak what people use in their real life. I focused on looking for a job at the first month. An Irish friend helped me to make a CV and I walked all around the city with CVs all day long. After 2 weeks, I had been able to get an interview at Starbucks. Even if my English was not that good, the manager gave me a chance to do a trial. Fortunately, I got the job after the trial! In that moment, I couldn’t believe that could be possible for me to work in a café but they gave me a chance to work and my colleagues had been very patient with me trying to help me with the language. I can say that I have learnt a lot in my working place.
While working at Starbucks, I had improved my English a lot with many helps. But I felt that I was limited in the use of the language and I was able to use confidently only a small range of vocabulary and expression. I couldn’t ask to friends to correct my grammar mistake every time. In order to improve my English, I went to SEDA College in Dublin last year. In the language school, I had the opportunity to have talks with my classmates and teachers and understand some mistakes that I was doing. It was really useful and helpful for me. Weekly and Monthly test helped me to check where I was making errors.
< The most beautiful memory in Ireland>
1) St. Patrict’s Day
St. Patrick’s day is a cultural and religious
celebration held on 17th March. I did not know
about St. Patrick’s day when I was in Korea.
But I realized how I am lucky that
I could have the opportunity to experience of
St. Patrick’s day in Ireland. Dublin were covered full
of tourists who wear green hat and green shirts. I went out to the Irish local pub and talked with a lot of
people from all around world. I never forget that moment.
2) Halloween Day
This year in order to celebrate Halloween, my housemates and I thought it would be nice organize a party in the house. We spent quite long time decorating our house together: carving pumpkins, putting spider webs on the walls and preparing spooky recipes. The result was just amazing! We invited our friends, and as you already know, Dublin is an international city. By saying that, I mean that is plenty of people from all around the world. And so it’s not so strange to say that those friends that I invited to the party were originally from Korea, Italy, America, China, Germany, Spain, India, Belgium, France and Ireland. What I like most is when kids dress up in many different ways and they come to ring to your door bell asking for sweets. This is the traditional way for kids to celebrate this special day. I have to confess that it’s not so common to see so many cute little kids in just one night.
3) Traveling European countries
If you like traveling, Ireland is the perfect place. There are a lot of low-cost
airline flying to Europe. Price is very reasonable and the accommodation
system is very well organized. So far, I have been to France, Italy, Portugal,
England and Spain but, to be honest, I want to travel more. I feel lucky that
I was able to visit all these places. Usually Korean student travel all across
Europe for 1 or 2 months during their college break. It is the only time in which
students can travel so far and can afford such a big travel cost. Once in Ireland,
it’s all another story, anyone can travel abroad even just for a weekend!
This is another great advantage of being living in Dublin.
Ireland seems to be a completely different country but there are a lot of similarities if you consider its history and its culture. Irish people are very open-minded and welcoming to foreigners. When I couldn’t speak even one sentence properly, my Irish friends are always ready to listen to me patiently, sometimes they have a laugh of you, but this is more related to their great sense of humor and it is in their culture to have fun, as they say: “have the crack”, I can also add that they never leave you without having helped you. So if you want to have an Irish friend be ready to have a laugh all together and don’t take things too personally. If you are considering to come to Ireland, I would like to say that in Ireland you will meet an open minded culture and a land of opportunities.