Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler

Daily Life as an Irish Student

Time March 7th, 2017 in 2017 Spring, Ireland | No Comments by

Life in Ireland, wow, it’s amazing.

Of course, it has its ups and downs, but that’s just life in general. The best part is, every low is “higher” than the lows at home, because I’m here!

The most notable thing about Ireland that differs from The University of Tulsa would be the daily life. Here, I live in an apartment with four other girls, have a 20 minute walk to class, cook for myself, and have to adapt to the weather at any given moment. But hey, I’m learning how to live on my toes!

The best advice I can give to a student who is looking to study in Ireland is to pack with the weather in mind. The Irish students dress up, for classes, but only under their coat and rain jacket! A big hood is a must, layers, a scarf, and although they don’t wear rain boots a lot, when it pours they’re needed. The rainbows are beautiful, the grass is green, the walk to class is reflective as we pass the Irish countryside. Learning to cook has been a bit of a struggle, but luckily the other IFSA students and my Irish roommates are phenomenal¬†chefs!

Daily life of an Irish student involves waking up in a snuggly bed and having to get up out of the burrito, put on some fuzzy slippers, and shower in the morning while the water is still warm. Put on a couple layers, make some breakfast and pack a lunch, double check that my charger is in my bag, and head to campus for the day. As the twenty minute walk is enjoyable with nice weather, I always have my rain jacket and enough homework to keep me on campus if it starts to pour, because the weather changes every 30-45 minutes. Tutorials (larger lectures) and Seminars (smaller discussions) throughout the day, studying and socializing in between, and making sure to keep up with the weekly socs (societies, which are like our clubs) email! Campus is always lively, whether it’s¬†the cafeteria, Smokey’s Cafe, the library, the Arts Concourse, or the campus bar, Sult. With coffee and soup a day, I’m starting to feel more Irish. Hopefully I’ll turn a little greener for St. Patrick’s Day!

But until then, stay warm (and dry)! Read More »

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My Adventures in Torres del Paine

Time April 7th, 2009 in College Study Abroad | No Comments by

Patagonia. Before coming to study in Chile, I was aware of this region. After all, even the name of this southern portion of South America (in Chile and Argentina) is related to Magellan’s expeditions and encounters with the native people of this land. But despite this historical significance, Patagonia was still not on my list of places to see during my semester abroad. To be honest, I was probably more familiar with Patagonia Outdoor Clothing company, rather than the actual region.

Nevertheless, when my friends began planning a trip to Torres del Paine National Park, I decided to go along with them just for fun. This Chilean national park is in the northern park of Patagonia, containing mountains, glaciers, lakes, and rivers. To get there, we flew from Santiago to Punta Arenas. We then had to take one bus from Punta Arenas to Puerto Natales, as well as another bus from Puerto Natales to the park. It essentially took an entire day to travel to our destination and the trip was definitely not cheap, but I must say, it was worth it.

Where do I even begin describing this experience? Hmm…. well, two days before the trip, my 7 friends studying in Chile and I decided to get together to figure out the details of our trip. At that point, all we had done was book our flights. Just before I met up with them, I went to my friend’s house to borrow some of her hiking equipment and camping gear (oh yeah, did I mention that we would be camping in this park?). She insisted that I use her sleeping bag, backpack, and hiking boots—especially after I told her that I was planning on hiking Torres del Paine in my rainboots. It’s not that I’m not an outdoors person, but I’ve never had the opportunity to do these types of activities so I was completely unprepared for what was in store for me. Anyways, we ended up not really planning any of the details of the trip. We figured we’d just show up in Patagonia and wing it. And surprisingly, that worked.

For example, when we got to Puerto Natales, there was only one bus left to go to the Torres del Paine National Park, and we made it just in time, or else we would have had to wait until the next day when we only were staying for 3 days total. And when we reached the park, we hiked up to the camping site, but by this time, it was almost dark. And there we were trying to set up two tents in the dark with two small flashlights when it was ridiculously windy outside. Needless to say, that did not go very well. Luckily, the park ranger let us use 5 tents for free that night. That incident summarized our entire trip.

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