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My time here is passing way too fast. I can’t believe that is has already been six months. I love it in Ireland and found a few friends in Westport, the town nearby, and we try to hang out as often as possible. That means sometimes going to the gym together, having some tea or just walking around. We even baked something together which was a ton of fun.
This month was a rugby match in Galway and everybody was so excited. Our school organized a bus for the 5th years which drove us there. Though our team fought hard, we sadly lost the game, but it was amazing to watch! If you ever get the chance to watch a match, do it, it is worth it. Even if your team loses, the thrilling experience of rooting for the team and getting to see your classmates being as excited as you are, makes it all okay.
Of course, as lovely as that experience was, it doesn’t even come close to the St. Patrick’s Day and the parade that I witnessed here in Ireland. My host sister Olga and I convinced our hostparents to let the two of us go to Dublin to see the 2 hours parade for ourselves. It was a quite impulsive decision to be honest with you and I don’t regret one second of it. We got on the earliest available train that we could book the night before – as I said, it was spontaneous – and got home on the latest train which was at 6.15 pm. When my host sister and I arrived in Dublin, we were starving and sat in the next best café that we could find and enjoyed an Irish breakfast together. As soon as we had finished, we followed the crowd into the city and were stunned by the countless Irish and Ukrainian flags spread around the entire city. I’m not lying when I tell you that there wasn’t a single spot without colour. Everything was covered in green. The people were in a fantastic mood and nobody could wait for the parade to start. The anticipation was so high that we were in happy to see one of the security guards walk the route up and down to secure it for the upcoming parade.
When it finally began, the crowd started cheering and was thrilled to see the costumes of the marching line of people. Some of them sang, others gave short performances or delighted us with great music. There are not enough words to describe this experience. So, all I can say is, no matter how lovely the parade in the town that you live in for an exchange year might be, go to Dublin for this day and I hope that you will be as speechless as I was.
After the parade had passed, Olga and I knew that there was no place for us to sit in and eat because the ENTIRE crowd was looking for a nice restaurant to enjoy a hot meal. That’s why we walked around for a while, gave the Disney shop a quick visit and after an hour or two, we decided to try our luck. Surprisingly, we found a restaurant with some free seats fairly quickly and got a late lunch there. We talked about the day that we were experiencing and shared our favourite moments of the parade. The most colourful one was definitely the pride group and needless to say, they made everybody cheer louder than they had with any of the other ones.
An hour had passed and we decided that it was time to get to the train. We walked back along the river and saw many more people with hats, huge sunglasses or an entire suit, all in the beautiful colour green.
When we got on the train, there wasn’t nearly as many people as on our way there and we talked most of the almost 4 hours train ride about the trip we just went on. We definitely don’t regret going there.
Can’t wait to see what next month holds for me.