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Some Things I’ve Learned So Far 02/10/2010

Posted by Jenn in Uncategorized.

Since I’m far too lazy to upload photos today, I will share with you instead some things (good, bad, and strange) that I have learned over the past three weeks in Ireland.

1. There is broken glass EVERYWHERE, and there is absolutely nothing you can do to fix it. So don’t fall over, EVER.

2. “Tomato ketchup” here is anything but, and is actually a little gross.

3. If the United States started making “gravy chips” (i.e. steak fries covered in delicious beef gravy), our obesity rates would skyrocket even MORE than what they are now. Yes, they ARE that good.

4. Tesco’s. Is. Amazing. That is all.

5. I lied–that is not all. Tesco’s is awesome, and full of great and easy to make food with easy to follow directions RIGHT ON THE LABEL. Even my Tesco’s, which is much smaller than the epically more awesome Tesco’s in Coleraine, is the best grocery store I’ve ever been in.

6. Let it be known that the weather here is NOT as bad as I thought it was before I came here. That being said, it’s far from good, either. But these past two or three days have been sunny…maybe I’ve just gotten lucky!

7. There is almost no homework in Irish universities. I will repeat that for those of you paralyzed in shock. There is ALMOST NO HOMEWORK. Some classes will have reading, but even that reading is about 80% shorter than any reading assignment you might have in the US (at least for me as a history major, lol). However, before you start rejoicing too much, this means that a much higher percentage of your grade is dependent on one or two assignments. I have a presentation for one class worth 45% of my grade…and the other 55% is my final essay. Bomb one, and you bomb for good. It’s a trade-off, I suppose.

8. You have to turn on the light switches here, and I think that’s a really good idea. That way electricity only runs in them when you actually need it. Neat!

9. Leggings. They are obnoxiously popular over here.

10. Take a chance and talk to interesting looking people; I’ve done it a few times so far, and it’s worked out pretty well over all!

11. Boots is a REALLY cool pharmacy, if only for the fact that they have the hippest looking “generic Boots brand” products I’ve ever seen.

12. I have to use change to do my laundry now. I have learned that the 20p piece, while useless in the real world, is proving extremely handy come laundry time. Seriously, that’s the only time I use 20p coins, and when I get them, I put them in my laundry coin stack, lol.

13. Built-in cabinets, desks, and shelves = awesomely convenient. Benedum has got the right idea, am I right, Wesleyan folks?

14. There is a bookstore here called Waterstone’s, and it is awesome.

15. You don’t have to tip here. Anywhere. It’s offputting, but strangely awesome.

16. Bars here are not necessarily for going to get drunk in. They also have food! And they’re a good place to go talk with friends, at least until they put the music on…then you can’t hear much, lol.

17. Ovens that are permanently set to broil cook bad, bad pizza.

18. Buses, buses, everywhere, but never any when you actually NEED one.

19. If our nutritional content on food packaging in the US was anything near as helpful as the stuff here, we’d all be skinny. Or at least we’d know why we were fat. ^_^!

20. Always ask the bus driver if your bus is going where you need to go if you are unsure. Otherwise, who knows where you could end up?


1. Kate - 02/10/2010

I suppose I should have given you British life 101 before you left. Yes, Dominoes, and to a lesser degree Pizza Huts in the UK are nasty.

Boots, Tescos (as well as Sainsbury’s) and Waterstone’s are amazing. They will be your best friends for quite a while.

20p coins are useless unless you have to take a wee in a public toilet, or for the laundry. Another coin (I’ve noticed) that is kinda useless is the 5p coin. I have loads of them I need to get rid of somehow and every time I try I just end up getting more.

Buses are notorious creatures that are also elusive. If you don’t time it just right, you will stand there at the bus stop for hours.

As for good old Buckhannon and the US. of A, we’re getting snow up to our eyeballs. My mom has been stuck in the house for almost a week now thanks to “Snow-mageddon”. Dr. Mahoney’s being bearish because he didn’t finish his book before the end of Christmas break.

In other news, I decided to go on the Ireland may term this year so I suppose that means you will be stalking me personally this May.


jennloveschicken - 02/10/2010

Amen to the Domino’s thing…I don’t think I’ll be ordering much pizza, especially not when there’s a Tesco’s literally across the street from me. (It’s not even really a street, it’s like the driveway into Tesco’s is all that’s dividing where I live from the store. It rocks!) And yes, the buses are elusive little beasts, and the 5p coin has come in very handy this past week only because the school has been collecting loose change for Haiti relief. So there’s that. :P

SNOWMAGGEDON! That’s so scary, I keep reading the internet and going, “HOMG, I’d be there right now, covered in snow, if I weren’t here.” Spooty snow! Where does it all come from? But hopefully by the time you get to Ireland, the weather will be somewhat improved! Yay!!! I talked to Dr. Mahoney, and it looks like I’ll probably be stalking you all while you are in Galway, because by the time you get to Northern Ireland, I think I’d be about to leave. Galway though…I can make a day trip to Galway, *bwa ha ha ha ha ha*

CHEERS! And thanks for the rundown! (I totally, totally love Boots, BTW, lol.) Byeeeeee!

Kate - 02/10/2010

I love Boots too. They’ve always been there to help me through my toiletry crises. Superdrug is good too, but not as shiny and wonderful as Boots.

I don’t know where this snow is coming from either, but Wesleyan is dragging their feet about closing the school. Every other school in the area is closed, and Wesleyan makes their kids come out in 30 mph winds and snow storms. Not fair.

Galway eh? I may have to look and see what this Galway has to offer me, especially in the way of convenient hiding places.

2. jennloveschicken - 02/11/2010

Yes, Galway! There is a bench with a bronze Oscar Wilde on it–I got my picture with him last time, lol. Yay, I’m so excited that you’re coming! Between you, Cat, Danielle, and I don’t know who else, I’m going to have a ball meeting up with you all!!! ^_^!

That sounds utterly gross. I know Wesleyan hates giving extra days off, but I think they’re endangering the lives of the poor professors who have to drive from far off to get to school…yes, that is what they are doing, and they should cancel a couple of days, lol.

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