Reflection: Ireland in Review- The Rant

This is a fun post for me because I finally gave myself a chance to be very real and show everyone that while I had an amazing time, there are downsides to being away from home. I’ve already been back to Ireland a second time and planning a third trip. It has become like home to me! Enjoy my rant!

December 2013 //

I feel like I have done a good job at showing that I have had a really positive experience here in Ireland and so now I would just like to take a post to mention the things that bug me, that suck, or that are just weird. Starting with the fact that most people here still use clotheslines to dry their clothes. Why on earth would you try and dry your clothes when it’s raining over two thirds of the year and there is hardly any sunshine? It doesn’t make any sense to me and is a very frustrating thing, though luckily I have usually been in places that have a dryer. That brings me to my next point the washer and dryers here are very small. The amount of clothes I brought with me should fit into one large load of laundry or two small loads in a regular washer and dryer you would use in the US, but in Ireland that turns into two large loads or three/four small loads. The washer and dryers look like they are the same size but let me tell you looks can be deceiving so if you travel here just be prepared for that.

The food in Ireland sucks. I tried to come up with a better more polite way to say this but this is really the only thing that I could come up with. I have only had only had pizza twice here and one of them was alright but wasn’t anything like the pizza I would eat back home. The other pizza I had was the worst pizza I have ever had and I am including slightly burnt pizza. The takeaway food was shocking to me. There are Kebab places everywhere and things that seem like a mom and pop sort of burger place, that is until you get the food. The price you will pay for a cheap burger is three to four times what you would pay for a McDouble and it’s not even half as good of quality. Would you pay five dollars for something that isn’t even the quality of something on the dollar menu? It’s good to try places to get a feel for Ireland, but that being said I would avoid doing it. It’s cheaper to cook for yourself.

That being said I have done a lot of cooking for myself being in Ireland which has definitely helped my cooking skills, but eventually it starts to feel exhausting. The stoves here are different than what I am used to and it’s weird for me to have to turn on the button to turn on the heat before I start cooking. I have had to try really hard to remind myself to turn that stupid button on! Luckily I don’t have to shop for myself very often as food is usually included at the places I am staying/working at, but when I do shop it is always an adventure. There are no Walmarts here and none of the stores even compare. I am used to going to places like Walmart or Winco to do a majority of my shopping because I am cheap. Here not only do I not know where the shops are, I don’t know which ones to shop in. I recommend using Lidl because they are as close as you will get to a cheap place to do grocery shopping. If you are going there though lower your expectations. Then when you are done doing that lower them again. After that you should be ready to grocery shop in Ireland!

Something I was not expecting to have happen while I was here was to be given various nicknames. Most of these like Boise or Idaho I don’t mind. You can call me those things because it’s a nice little reminder of home. However the two things that I have been called that I didn’t enjoy were Ohio and Yank. Ohio I obviously didn’t like because I’m not from there. Yank I didn’t enjoy because the way it was said it was very obviously not a good thing. It was an old guy that called me it and it was weird that he was calling me that with the tone of voice he had because at that same time he was helping me get a ride. I had never really thought about what I thought a Yank was but I always associate it with New York and have never given it a good or bad perception. I think description number two on (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=yank) explains the difference pretty well actually. It was more weird than anything but the upsetting part was that it was obviously meant to be an insult.

My absolute biggest pet peeve since coming to Ireland has been the fact that people seem to think that I represent all of America and that because I represent all of America they think that I am the perfect person to discuss all of their frustrations about my country with me. I don’t necessarily mind discussing my country, politics, laws, and all sorts of things like that. However what I do mind is when people go into this kind of conversation looking for an argument. If you want to get into an argument with me about laws or the way things work in the US and you don’t know that Idaho is a state or even close to where it would be located on a map then you don’t get a say. I have had people who could not even tell whether Idaho was in the west or east of the United States try to argue with me about things I would tell them about Boise. What would make a person think that they know more about my hometown than I do when they don’t even know anything about my state? That would be like me visiting Dublin and thinking I know everything about Ireland! This is something that has happened to me more than I can count so if you are visiting Ireland just be prepared.

Another thing that people say when I tell them I am from Ireland is, “Oh America! Yeah I’ve seen America, I went to New York City once.” The first time I heard this I was shocked and had to try really hard not to laugh. I have to try really hard not to be a jerk when people say this. The thing that I always want to say is, “Oh really? Do you know how long it would take to drive from my town to New York? Days. It would take days. 36-38 hours of straight driving. It takes three hours to get across all of Ireland.” I get really frustrated when people think that they have seen America or know everything about it because they have visited NYC. America is 137 times the size of Ireland and I feel like I haven’t even seen half of Ireland or know enough about it to talk about their politics.

My last little rant is about the lack of sunshine. Now this was something I was actually expecting everyone knows that it rains in Ireland, but you don’t really understand it and how much it affects everything. It gets depressing. The sun comes up at 9am and that is if you can even see it, but it is probably overcast and the sun sets at 4pm and that’s if you can see it, but again it’s probably overcast. You are really only getting 3-4 hours of actual sunshine a day if you even see the sun and since I am working at usually 11-4 I miss out on any sunshine that there might be. I miss the sun and I want it back! I never thought I would say that because I have always loved the rain, but there is nothing quite like the weather in Ireland!

Well I hope that rant wasn’t too much and that it might be helpful to someone! Oh and I used the picture of my first Guinness because even though I have some things to rant about the Guinness in Ireland will never let you down.

Today // 

Having taken my second trip to Ireland, the food doesn’t suck, you just have to find what you like. I love fresh seafood and Ireland has AMAZING places for seafood. Just goes to show that you shouldn’t knock something before you give it a second chance! I also didn’t mind representing America so much this time, because when people said, “Trump, huh?” I would simply say I didn’t vote for him and then I had some great conversations about politics.

Is there anywhere that you have travelled that you didn’t like, but still gave another try? Tell us about it! We love other travel stories! Maybe there was somewhere that you won’t go back to, why is that?

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