Kickin' it in Cork

Trip Start Jan 01, 2011
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Trip End May 28, 2011


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Where I stayed
Farrenlea Hall

Flag of Ireland  , County Cork,
Sunday, January 2, 2011

I have been in Cork for almost two weeks now, and I have loved every minute of it. We first arrived on Sunday, January 2nd and it was a whirlwind! 

The flight from Boston to Dublin seemed to fly by!  I watched Killer which was really good then I just listened to my iPod.  I didn't sleep at all but it felt like in no time we were landing.  The bus from Dublin to Cork seemed longer than the flight but I think it was just because everyone was so tired.  It was about a 3.5 hour ride.  Then once in Cork, we went into one of the lecture rooms at UCC and had breakfast and were told our itinerary for the next few days.  Our coordinator Mark and his wife set up a scavenger hunt which we did next.  It was a great way to see the different streets and get an idea of the layout of the city.  There are three main streets in town, Grand Parade, Oliver Plunkett and Washington Street.  I feel like I will get the hang of the area pretty quickly.  Next we all went to the shopping center were we could buy groceries and other items. By the end of the night, I was exhausted and definitely ready for bed! 

The next day, we had a tour by a UCC grad student, Aimee. We walked around the whole city. She told us what shops sold what and gave advice on the hot spots for college students. That evening, all 68 of us, went to a restaurant, the Brick Oven, for pizza. It was great that we were able to relax and get to know some of the other students. I am really glad that I decided to study abroad through my school, because little aspects like the tour and going out to dinner, helped in the initial days of being in a foreign city. There are only 7 juniors and all of the rest are sophomores. Out of all of the juniors I only knew Kristen so it was fun meeting new fellow classmates--they are all so nice!

After dinner, a few of us went to a popular pub called the Washington Inn. It was really nice and everyone was friendly to us and of course wanted to know where we were from.  We checked out a few more popular pubs on the way home just to scope out some fun places for the future (Reardens & Baileys).

Over the next few days, we were exploring and figuring out classes. In Ireland, they give you a period of time where you can figure out if you like the class or if you want to try a different one. I am taking forensic psychology, health psychology, Irish music and art history of Italy.  I like all my classes so far but it is much different from back home.  I'm having a little trouble adjusting from interactive classes with American teachers to full lectures and Irish teachers that I can't completely understand.  But it is nice that each "module" (class) is only two hours a week instead of three like we had back home.  I'm really excited for my art history class because we are actually taking a field trip to Florence, Italy in February!
 
Kristen and I got put together as roommates.  We also live with three Irish students (Aisling Hennessy, Mairead Murphy and Aoife Murphy) who we have been trying to get to know.  We are one of a few QU students that got put with Irish students so we are pretty lucky.  They are "first years" (freshmen) and very helpful. I ask them a bunch of questions a day, but they do not mind. They also go home on the weekends (to Kilkenny), like most Irish students. I found that very interesting that they just go to school during the week.  Our roommates invited us home with them so we are really excited to see where they are from.

The food has not been much different from the States which is good.  I have yet to find rice, mac & cheese and mozzarella sticks but they have just about everything else!

One major difference would be the amount of walking we do!  Depending on where my class is I could have an 8-25 minute walk.  Downtown is about a 25-30 minute walk as well.  I actually enjoy the walk and have only taken the city bus a couple times.  We have two convenient stores right down the street (2 minute walk), they are like a CVS or 7-11.  There is a great pizza place as well! 

Mark told us to check out the St. Finbarr's Cathedral which is down the street from our dorm.  You can get tours during the week but he suggested a night mass because it looks really cool with all the lights.  Kristen, Liz and I figured we would check it out.  We "googled" the Sunday night mass times and it said 7pm.  When we got there it was practically empty with huge chorus group on the altar.  An hour or so later when everyone proceeded out we realized it was some chorus concert--oops!  The building was beautiful though so it was worth going just to look around inside.

University of Cork College’s gym is amazing! It has everything from squash courts, pools, and gyms to trampoline rooms and rock climbing walls.  We have gone a couple times already and done rock climbing and squash.  For rock climbing you sign up a day or so in advance and just show up and you get a free hour one-on-one with an instructor.  For squash you sign up prior as well and they give you all the equipment you need.  We decided we want to join the squash club and trampoline club at UCC.  They just meet at the gym a couple nights a week and teach you how to play squash or different flips and twists on the trampolines.

I am posting pictures that go along with this entry so check them out!

More to come!

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Comments

Grandma C on

Kenzie You did a super-super job with this project. We love it and now can't wait to see it ourselves.
We sare glad you had a save and easy trip and allis well.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Much love Gran & Gran XOXO

Kim on

I FOUND YOU! sneaky sneaky ....

mcuddy
mcuddy on

touche...I tried googling it myself & wasn't able to find it so I give you credit...you have got some skills ;)

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