week 2

My first week of classes was last week. I have one business class a day, Mon-Thurs, plus Irish history on Wednesday nights; all my classes are three hours long. On Monday I have a Human Recourse Development class at 9am. On Tuesdays I have Human Resource Management and on Wednesday I have International Business at noon. After that class on Wednesday, I have a three hour break on campus and then have Irish history from 6-9pm. On Thursdays I have Entrepreneurial Management at 11am. In all of my classes I have at least three of the other nine kids I live with plus other American students that are here in our program. This is definitely nice as my roommates and I can share books as they look like they are quite expensive here. There are many international students here; in every class, there are many more international students, most of whom are only here for a semester or two, than there are Irish students. With the exception of my Irish History class, all my classes seem very interesting. I wish my Irish History lecture was more interesting, but the professor speaks in a monotone voice, reads off pages and pages of information without putting anything on PowerPoint or the board and does not allow us to ask questions during the lecture when we don’t understand her. It seems like she doesn’t know what she is talking about and only knows what is on the sheets in front of her that she reads from.

That being said, the Quinn School is amazing; the Quinn School is the business school at UCD. It is the best business school in Ireland, one of the best in Europe and has many accreditations. Quinn School is very much so like Bentley. The lectures are no larger than 35-40 students, classrooms are very high tech and the building is wireless. All of my business professors are very well educated and seem friendly.

Wednesday night was UCD student night at the Q-Bar, which is only about a 10-minute walk from our house, so we all went over after class. It was a very fun night. We met a bunch of Irish students from UCD there and we met and got to know a lot of the other students here in our program from other schools.

I had quite a wonderful weekend here in Dublin. On Friday, I went to Trinity College with the two girls who live in the apartment below me, Johanna and Moira. They are both seniors at UMASS Dartmouth and here in the same program as me. We saw the Book of Kells and the Old Library while at Trinity. The Book of Kells is gorgeous, but the Old Library is absolutely breath taking.

On Saturday, the three of us went to the Dublin Zoo. It is on the completely opposite side of the city from our house, but the bus ride was not too long. There were many different types of animals at the zoo, and about 10 different types of monkeys alone. The only disappointing part was that the lion, tigers and leopard were not out when we were there. But they had rhinos, hippos, penguins, giraffes and much more. Saturday was a beautiful day out and there was not a cloud in the sky, so it was great that we were able to walk around outside and enjoy the day.

Yesterday the program here had a bus tour around Dublin for us to go on if we wanted to. I went with the other 10 Bentley students and our friend Katie from Colorado. We ended up on a different bus than the other students in our program, but it was a fun day. It was a hop-on, hop-off tour, so we were able to get out and see what we wanted. We got out at the Dublin Castle and walked around on our own for a bit, and I plan to go back again and take a tour. We then tried to see St. Patrick’s Cathedral, but service had begun before we got there so there were no tours and we did not want to walk into service that late, I am hoping to go see the cathedral some time this week. We then went to the Guinness Factory and Storehouse. It was an interesting tour and we learned a lot about the company. The most interesting fact that I learned was about the creation of the Guinness Book of World Records: the book was actually put together in order for bar tenders to settle disputes over facts at pubs as one of the Gunniesses had gotten into a discussion over what game bird was the fastest twice. And coincidently, this fact was not published in the first book, but did get into the second edition. The best part of the whole tour however, was by far the Sky Bar on the 7th floor. When you get up there, the entire room has glass walls and, since the bar is round, you have an amazing panoramic view of all of Dublin; it was such a beautiful sight. After we were done with that, we got back on the bus tour and rode it out to the end and then walked home.

Tonight, my cousin Tom is coming to pick up Johanna, Moira and myself so we can come see him and his friends play at Hughes, which is a pub up near where he lives. I am quite excited for tonight as last time I went out with Tom, I had a great time, and this time I get to bring some friends with me so they too can experience a true Irish pub. I am hoping to get to St. Patrick’s Cathedral and/or the Dublin Castle one afternoon this week or next to take the tours. On Thursday after class I am going to another one of my cousin’s for the weekend to see all of them and we are going to go out for dinner one of the nights to celebrate another cousin and my birthdays as his is today and mine is next week.

I hope all is well with everyone, I miss everyone.

And for all of you who don’t already know…here is the link to view my pictures from Ireland: http://community.webshots.com/user/lamargotiatbent

week 1

So my first week here in Dublin has been very interesting. I flew in on Saturday morning and my cousins Margaret and Tom met me at the airport. After getting through security and such, we went back to Margaret’s house in Naas (about 30 min south of Dublin). At Margaret’s we had some food and I relaxed. I stayed at Margaret’s house until Wednesday when I moved into my apartment here in Dublin, right in Merrion Square.

On Sunday, Margaret took me for a walk around Naas and we watched the All Ireland Hurling Final. After the match, we went to their GAA club.

On Monday, Margaret took me to Ballybunion to go to lunch with Kit. While we were there, we stopped by Owen & Noreen’s house and I met them and their granddaughter, Noreen. They all are extremely friendly. It was raining a lot when we were there, so I didn’t get to see much of Ballybunion, but we drove past the golf course, the statue of Bill Clinton and drove down Kit Ahern Ave. Kit, Margaret and I went to lunch in Listol. After lunch we went into an old church to see an art exhibit that Kit wanted to see. Then we went across the street to some writer place to see another art exhibit that Kit wanted to show us, but it was no longer there.

On Tuesday, while the boys were at school, Margaret, Peter and I came into Dublin to see Margaret’s friend, Missy, play a basketball game as she plays for Great Britain and the GB team was playing the Ireland ladies team. When we got back, Eoin and I played baseball in their backyard and Conor came out to play with us for a little, then the boys taught me how to play hurling.

On Wednesday, Margaret took me grocery shopping, we went to look for desks for Conor, picked Conor up from school and then came into Dublin. After that, she took me into Dublin and I moved into my apartment. We got here, met most of my roommates, then went out to get some bedding so I could be comfortable in bed as the bedding we were given was not very nice. On the way back to the apartment, we stopped for a small bite. Margaret came back to the apartment with me for a little while and then went back home.

I live in the Merrion Square Manor. It is a very nice, old house that has been restored and apartments are in it. I live in apartment #5, it is a 6 person apartment, wth 3 bedrooms. 2 of the bedrooms both have 2 boys in them and I am in the 3rd bedroom with a girl named Alyssa. Alyssa and I have our own bathroom as well, and it is attached directly to our bedroom. Two of the boys, Mike and Mike, are from Bentley, and both live in MA. The other two, Dave and Kevin, are from Fordham. Two other boys, Scott and Tom, live in the same house as us and their room is 1/2 flight down from us.

On Thursday, the four boys from Bentley that I live with and two others that live on campus went out to a bunch of pubs. First we went to O’Donoghue’s, then John Kehoe’s. After that we found another pub and then went to BK for something to eat, it was a very bad idea. After that, we went to a bar called Captain Americas and had a blast. After that we found this one pub around Temple Bar and had an amazing time. We met these 30-year-old women who bought us a bunch of shots. We also met some girls from Missouri that are studying abroad in The Netherlands.

On Friday, we had orientation at UCD. That night I went out with my cousin Tom Allen. First we went back to his apartment to get his banjo, then went to a pub called Cobblestones at the end of his street. We then went to Hughes, which is where he plays his banjo on Monday nights. After that we came back here to O’Donoghue’s where he played the banjo with a bunch of other guys. It was such a fun time.

Yesterday, the boys and I walked around St. Stephen’s Green. It is beautiful. Last night, we went to Porterhouse and had a blast. After we left, Mike and Tom were trying to help one drunk guy we saw wandering in the middle of the street. The guy ended up breaking into our house and apartment. Tom and Scott were able to get him out and our landlord is due here momentarilly to fix the front door for us.