Peroid 2—start of something new

“Oh my god! Weiran, you choose the most two difficult courses!” When I was visiting my friend and talking about the courses of period 2, the friend who is a regular student felt worried with me. I replied with a smile, “don’t worry, I will work hard and I believe I can do a good job.”

However, the truth is that I’m worried, frustrated and unconfident now.

One of the courses I take is called Empirical Econometrics. The professor and tutor is humorous and easygoing. Every time we are in class, I feel like having a nice conversation with him. He is always nice to students, but he is strict with us. He pays attention to every detail of the tutorial, so we have to know clearly about the every definition of the proper noun and it is impossible to say something ambiguously. As the evaluation of the course is based on the participation and the final oral examination, it makes me concentrate on the lecture and tutorial. Some of my friends complained about the high pressure of the course, but what I think is different. Econometrics is the application of mathematics, statistical methods to economic data and gives empirical content to economic relations. So everything we are going through has to be precise and reasonable because a small mistake will ruin the whole thing. As an old Chinese saying goes, “A minimal error or deviation may result in wide divergence.”

But I can’t deny that the course sets high requirements to us. The course textbook is the same as the econometrics course in my home university. But can you imagine that they are still studying the first 6 chapters while we are now in chapter 13 because the professor required us to read through chapter 1 to 8 before the course?

The other course I take is called game theory and economics. I’m fascinated by game theory such us prison’s dilemma, battle of sex when I was studying basic microeconomics. But this course is far beyond my expectation. The course has a high requirement for mathematics because every interesting story and theory should be expressed in a very strict mathematical form. All the students who take this course are econometric students except for a few exchange students. But I really think highly of the unique way of learning game theory. The tutor is a well-respected professor who is also the author of the textbook. I feel frustrated as most of the students in the tutorial can follow the professor but sometimes I feel quite confused about the content.

I have realized that more efforts should be put into this course. And I believe that as only as I reached the turning point, I can follow the course. Cheer up for myself. ╮(╯_╰)╭

The study part of my life is now a little bit dark but the other part is still colorful. I have to say something about Cologne Carnival.

I went to cologne last week and spent time with my old friends who are now studying in cologne. We dressed to the carnival but as soon as we arrived the city center, we realized that we dressed too normal and it was far from overdressing. Everyone, from elderly woman to young boys, was in gorgeous costume. Bears, giraffes,police, soilders….I felt like in the fairy tale. I could help singing and dancing with them.

And I want to share the happiness with you.

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Period2, start of something new. Love life, love every little thing…….

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Coffee, cake and Dad (in that order)

I can’t believe I’m over half way through my exchange – where has all the time gone? Biking back from our exams we were so excited and relieved that the first period was over and yet we realised this meant there was only one period left to go. The thought of leaving Maastricht and all of my new friends makes me so sad and yet living on the other side of the world really makes you appreciate the comforts of ‘home-home’. The one where Mum’s cooking is just a short drive away, or where everyone speaks the same language and time-zones don’t rule your life! Yet all the things that keep you on your toes here make it all that much more exciting. I love being one of the only native English speakers in my class – it makes for the most hilarious misinterpretations! I also don’t mind pretending I speak Dutch at the supermarket or cafe (until they catch me out with a random question I don’t understand). Need I mention the amazing food? Vlaai, waffles and ice-cream are things I will definitely miss back home (better make the most of it while I’m still here then right?). All in all it’s been a great few months and I can’t wait to see what adventures the next lot bring (hopefully my bike will make it till the end!).

Last weekend I was lucky enough to spend three days with my Dad after he finished his work season in Europe. After getting back from Dublin I waited impatiently at the station for Dad’s train to arrive after it had been delayed for what felt like forever (maybe it was just 10 minutes…). Before all the passengers could get off I had already raced on board to give Dad a big hug. It was so great to see him after so long and was the perfect boost for my half way point. Dad had booked in to a really nice apartment on the Vrijthof  where I promptly decided I would also be staying for the weekend. We found a restaurant just around the corner and caught up over some yum food and maybe a few too many Bailey’s (why not – Dad’s treat!). From the restaurant we watched a light show about the history of Limburg that was projected on to one of the buildings. The special effects were really clever and despite it all being in Dutch it was actually really interesting to watch. Later, as we were both pretty tired from our travels, we ended up just chilling (and eventually falling asleep) on the couch watching TV.

Light show

Light show

Saturday morning we walked along the river and found a nice cafe for breakfast ( finding places to eat is a common theme in this blog). Dad was surprised by how late all the cafes opened but I explained that in Maastricht people seem to wake up late and stay up even later. Walking through town I attempted to impress Dad with my knowledge of Maastricht, however being a tour guide, Dad knew a lot more about the place than I did!

Most important meal of the day...

Most important meal of the day…

Father-daughter time

This one’s for you Mum!

Next up was a tour of the St Pietersberg Caves – a huge network of man-made tunnels in a hill overlooking Maastricht. The caves used to consist of 20,000 passageways covering a total of 200 kilometres but now over half of that is used for mining. Our crazy, orange-haired tour guide (who kinda scared me) took us underground where it was extremely cold and completely dark. With only the light of two lanterns she lead us through the labyrinth of corridors, telling us stories about all the names and drawings of people who use to work there. These ‘block-breakers’ were manual labourers who used to cut out blocks of limestone to build houses, churches and castles hundreds of years ago. She explained how the people sculpted a message for Napoleon when he visited the caves in 1803 (when Maastricht was still a part of the French empire). What I found really cool were pictures of old cartoon characters drawn by children who took shelter with their families while the city was being liberated at the end of WW2. The caves are also famous for all the dinosaur fossils that have been dicovered there and are still being found today. For two minutes of the tour the guide turned off all the lights and got us to walk through the tunnel in complete darkness. This was pretty cool for a while before it started to get scary and I kept bumping in to the person in front of me!

St Pietersburg Caves

St Pietersburg Caves

"Napoleon visits Maastricht"

“Napoleon visits Maastricht”

When we got out of the caves the sun was so bright and it felt way hotter than before we went in. We wondered down to the river through an area I’d never been before and stopped to play (ok it was just me playing) in a park covered in autumn leaves. We got ice-cream at Luna Rosa (a very important aspect of my tour) and took a river cruise along the Maas. I’d never seen the city from this angle so it was nice to have Dad there to share it with me.

Playing in the leaves

Playing in the leaves

Cruising along the river Maas

Cruising along the river Maas

Later that afternoon I took Dad to one of my favourite cafes at the Vrijthof for koffie and vlaai (another important part of my tour). He asked me how it was possible that all these Dutch people remain in shape with all the bad stuff they eat – “honestly Dad, I’ve been asking myself the same question since I got here.”

One of many!

One of many!

At night we visited this cute little cinema down the road called The Lumineer which plays random films no one really knows about but was showing a movie called ‘Still Mine’ which I wanted to see. The movie had Dutch subtitles but thankfully was in English. Afterwards we had Thai across the river just in time before it started to pour down with rain.

The next day we weren’t sure what to do because our previous plan of driving somewhere fell through after the silly car-rental company decided to close for the weekend. Instead we decided to jump on a bus to a small town in Belgium just half an hour away. Being a Sunday, the sleepy town of Hasselt seemed empty with the exception of a few locals wondering around the streets and cafes. We made a few loops of the main square and the big beautiful church build in 1727 (I’ve tried to research about it but can’t find much stuff in English). It was quite amazing to think that we were in another country after just a short bus ride. Grabbing yet ANOTHER cup of coffee we sat at a cafe for a while before catching the bus back home.

Quiet Sunday afternoon in Hasselt

Quiet Sunday afternoon in Hasselt

Chapel of 'Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-Virga-Jesse'

Chapel of ‘Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-Virga-Jesse’

I was pretty sad to drop Dad off at the train station the next day but I was so happy to have gotten the chance to see him – many of my friends wish their parents could come visit too. I’m pretty sure I put on 5kg’s from all the coffee and cake we ate but I’m not complaining ;-) thanks for the visit Dad – see you again next year!

A little more about football.

I waited till the last day of the deadline to write my monthly blog, because I was hoping to tell you about our victory against the 5th team in the ranking of FIFA, Belgium (guess which team is the 4th?). We won in a good match in Brussels for two goals to zero, one of Falcao, one of the best strikers in the world.  I am really excited because we play against Netherlands on Tuesday and I am going to cheer my “selección”. It is funny to realize how we are different among all the countries even when it is about supporting your national team. Most of my friends from here tell me that I am obsessed with the Colombian National team, and maybe I am, but it is really hard to understand how they tell to me that a club is more important for them, so basically the games against nations don´t care too much. For me is the opposite, perhaps it is because our league is not so competitive as, if you want to compare a big one, the Spanish league. The reason is easy, the best players are where the money is, and the money in football is in Europe.

In another topic I want to tell you my other trips so far so you can have a big view of the places I visited and have an opinion of your own when you choose your next stop within Europe. Berlin, Barcelona and Estocolm are the places I chose for my next trips, although tomorrow I am going to Warsaw (But I cannot tell you how I enjoyed there or can i?) I have to be honest with you, I didn´t expect much about Barcelona because I only wanted to watch the “superclasico” and that was it, but surprisingly Barcelona is one of the most exciting places I have visited. The food, the weather, the people and the party is amazing! The match, of course, was one lifetime experience, even if Messi did not play that well, because South America say “I am here” with goals of Neymar and Alexis.

In the other hand Berlin was a really cultural city, where I learned a lot, and if you are a fan of the history, you can breathe history in Berlin, and party like the Germans did when the wall felt in 1989. However it is a shame that I had to miss my flight to Estocolm because, like I told you in older blogs, Colombian need visa to enter to heaven. Basically, I wanted to spend Christmas in London, but like the UK does not belong to the Schengen Area, I needed a visa, even If I was staying for 1 week. Now, the funny thing is not even the really expensive price, but the system. Why? Well because I need a visa to travel to London, so I had to deliver my passport in the UK embassy in Amsterdam, but like I am Colombian, I need my passport to travel within Europe, so basically I had to stop my itinerary in order to go to London, hopefully it is worth it.

As conclusion I would like to raise a question, I had a relationship like one week ago, but I think Facebook is the guilty of the break up because it is a source to start the misunderstood or to think stuff that are not real. So, would you agree with me? Is it really community webs like twitter or Facebook a source of disruptive in the relations nowadays? I would really enjoy discussing this in my personal blog.

Period 2 underway—already?

It’s getting darker earlier now. It’s certainly cooler. And the cloudless and rain-free days are steadily becoming far and few between. As a native Californian, I feel that November in Maastricht has brought me my first “real” autumn—where the streets are now decorated in bright orange-red as the trees quickly shed their leaves in preparation for winter. In the middle of my third week of Period 2, Period 1 finals are a distant memory as preparing to be discussion leader in entrepreneurship and researching for supply chain tutorial become the new tasks on hand. By now, the Problem Based Learning format at school is routine and the once overwhelming amount of reading is much more manageable. With Period 1 in the books—well, almost…as we anxiously watch final marks trickle the school’s online portal—I feel as though I could pass as a full-time student with experiences shared, lessons learned, and know-how gained over past 13 weeks.

Now, as I try to construct a mental timeline between my previous post and today, I naturally contextualize the past month within my entire abroad experience. And I—with nostalgia from INKOM week during my first days abroad and my still simmering excitement from a recent weekend trip to hike the Alps in Interlaken, Switzerland—have become slightly uneasy that this post marks my ¾ point in Europe. I have had an incredible experience in Maastricht, and it seems too soon to be able to count my remaining weeks in Europe on one (full) hand. Nevertheless, I trust that each week like each one before will add something memorable to my experience abroad.

As always, the top highlights are always hard to pick. Here it is:

1) Take finals seriously. The study “cram session” week before finals I could tell that others were preparing for something big. And don’t get me wrong—I did spent my fair share of time in the library as well. But amongst the rumors and stories about how it carried out it was difficult to imagine how final exams in Maastricht worked. That Monday, I experienced first hand how to do it.

During exam week, Maastricht students from all faculties take their exams away from the school buildings and instead at the MECC, which is a large convention center on the opposite side of town. Throughout the day on the hour before each exam, as it is just getting light outside to when the sun is setting, the city’s bike paths are full of students as they travel in packs to make their pilgrimage to and from the convention center, about 25 minutes away by bike. Once you’ve managed to find an open spot to park and lock up, you follow the crowds as they stream into the testing room where there are hundreds—which seem like thousands—of desks arranged by course. And when the clock strikes 9:00, 13:00, or 17:00, the testing begins. Before you know it, the 3-hour test is done. My advice for next period? The usual “don’t procrastinate”, “study all along and it will be easier come test day”, and “don’t cram the night before” words of wisdom, of course. I hope I can finally take this advice as I enter my senior year of college. But most importantly, although the hype up to exam week is intense, make sure to remember that all students are in the exact same position. If you pay attention on what you need to study versus the buzz around the testing circumstances around the exam, you’ll be much better prepared to conquer the week.

2) Try traveling by yourself– you’ll meet others along the way. Here’s the connection from highlight #1 to #2. The perfect way to decompress after the busy week of exams was to do some traveling. While previous trips have been organized with other exchange students in the Guesthouse, my trips to London and Paris were long anticipated to visit some friends from my university and even middle & high school who were living abroad. With overnight bus rides booked and a 10-hour journey ahead of me, I ventured off from Maastricht with my iPod, bus-train tickets, and backpack for the weekend. I had heard of others that have backpacked Europe alone and end up meeting tons of interesting people along the way—in hostels, in bars, in transit, etc. With my journey relatively short and destination fixed, I did not enter the trip with this same mentality, and was more focused on making connections on time without getting too lost. In short, I made it to both cities and had a great time with old friends. However, I—least expectantly—too met others along the way. From a group of USA exchange students studying in Leuven, Belgium to a traveler from Montreal, Canada, I met and shared the traveling experience with new friends, some that I may see in the next month. Bottom line is to be open to meeting others, and you can learn a lot about other’s abroad experiences, and maybe find your next travel destination.

3) Continue to explore Maastricht. As school begins to get busy again, it’s tempting to fall back into the routine between SBE, the Guesthouse, and Albert Heijn. Whether it’s a new bar or two or a nearby park, there are still many new things that I find in Maastricht. It took me until last week to find the student-run Kiwi restaurant—which is less than a 2 minute walk from SBE—has, in my opinion, the best deals for tasty sandwiches. I also just found an awesome courtyard with tables and benches right on the building’s campus. Along the river, there many places to hang out on a sunnier, or at least rain-free, afternoon. While traveling to other countries and cities is part of the abroad experience, don’t forget to see Maastricht as one of the best to explore.

4) November 11th in Maastricht is very important day. It marks the start of Carnaval season! Throughout the day on Monday, people young and old, dressed in costume flooded the streets into the Vrijdhof to celebrate the beginning of the season. While spring exchange goers will enjoy a week of festivities, the single day of celebration that kicks off in the fall was a ton of fun. Just look on the internet for “Maastricht Carnaval” and you can see the excitement of the season.

That sums up the past month. Look back in another to see the conclusion of my semester abroad. Until then!

-Nik

The Adventure Continues

Welcome November! Exams are behind us, and we’re nearing the end of my first real autumn.

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Rocking these colours

Never in my life had I seen so many different shades of reds, oranges and browns on trees. For an Australian, it’s spectacular. Back home, the leaves don’t fall in the winter, and if they do, they definitely don’t turn all these magnificent colours! Safe to say, I am currently the proud owner of over 100 photos of trees.

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Autumn in the city

And while autumn is ending, it means winter is almost here. I am (much to my friends’ chagrin) praying for an early winter. And snow! A white Christmas. Quite different to beach and shrimp barbeque traditions back home.

Last weekend, I played tour-guide to my Dutch family who came for a visit. Maastricht is a beautiful town with so much history and it still sets itself apart from other Dutch towns. A picnic at Fort St Peter was in order – with particular surprise and appreciation for the wonderful view. Hills are still a phenomenon here

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Fun times on the city walls

That afternoon, we did a guided tour of the caves – which turn out not to be caves at all, but rather limestone mines dug out over centuries by farmers and landowners. The history is really interesting and the vastness of these caves is mindblowing. The whole of the Maastricht region and all the way to Belgium is riddled with these caves. Naturally, they are linked to the history as well – Napoleon left his mark, and there are etchings from WWI and WWII soldiers. Perhaps the most remarkable thing was that charcoal drawings dating back to the 1700s were still present, after all these years, and despite the many people who have since wandered (and gotten lost) in the caves.

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Charcoal Drawing

On a completely separate topic, and one which I am sure is covered by every student blogger ever to come to Maastricht University, is the MECC – our exam hall. My bike was stolen (another authentically Dutch experience) so I had a nice 3.5km walk each way for my exams (because it was as fast as taking the bus). I was so excited for my exams! Waiting outside the hall and seeing the sheer number of students, and how big the MECC hall is, had me jumping up and down with excitement.

In all honesty, it was probably a combination of loving my subjects, and the lack of pressure because the results didn’t affect our GPA, and the novelty of doing an exam with another 1000 people in a giant hall also used for trade shows and horse competitions. I took a nice panoramic in an attempt to remember just how large the hall is. It was surprisingly quiet, for the number of people, and it’s the first time I was allowed to eat during an exam (which I was very grateful for during my 5-8pm exam).

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1/10 of the hall

One hour after my last exam finished – so Friday lunchtime – I was on a train heading for Paris to celebrate. It was time to have fun and go crazy, eating baguettes and crepes aux Nutella, drinking cocktails in Montmartre, and finishing rainy escapades in cute corner cafes (where I discovered lait vanille and am on a mission to reproduce). Weekend adventures are the best.

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Into the Second Period

First period complete, what a transition from what I am use to. I don’t mean going to a different country every weekend, I am referring to the teaching methods that Maastricht uses. It’s no wonder they are ranked 98th University in the world, thankful to be apart of this institution.

After the football game I took a break from traveling to complete my exams, but the minute I handed in my last paper I was on my way to the airport to hop on a plane to Italy. We flew into Pisa and got to see the leaning tower of Pisa, took the train to florence and climbed all the cathedrals. We even ran into some of the guys from Maastricht it was one of the coolest experiences yet. Once we conquered florence, both during the day and at night we were on our way to Rome. We met some cool people at the hostel and the next day we hung out at the Colosseum, the Vatican and the Roman Forum, the Colosseum was one of the coolest things I have ever seen or been in.

leaning

After Italy we came back to the second period of school, more prepared and aware of what we had to do. That weekend we took off to Brussels, hunted for the Molson Canadian Beer fridge (look it up on you tube if you don’t know what it is) but we couldn’t find it. We had a great day sight seeing and went to a popular place called Delirium at night, the rest is history. Time to hit the books.

Cheers,

Taylor

The boys in Florence

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T’ be shuerr (Irish accent)

Yeees I know I haven’t written in AGES and yeees I’m terribly sorry! So anyway…I went to DUBLIN! As in, the ‘land of future husbands’ and the place I (as well as most of the female population/anyone who’s watched P.S. I love you) have always wanted to go. After a mad dash to the airport (straight from my exam) and a one and a half hour flight, we were there! It didn’t take long for my first “oh my god I love your voice” comment – which the customs man just laughed at (“I guess you hear that a lot right?”). As you can imagine, this was repeated maybe 100 times over the next couple of days. One accent I didn’t expect to hear though was the hostel receptionist’s who spoke to us in a delightfully pleasant and familiar voice – Kiwi of course! I think she was just as pleased as we were considering most travellers she met were Aussies (how unfortunate…). I’ve never stayed in a hostel before and I’ll admit I was nervous after hearing so many horror stories – but it was SO cool! It was called The Times and was nice and clean (which is saying a lot for me) and full of travellers from all over the world. We stayed in a mixed room with 8 beds which was interesting during the early hours of the morning. The lovely Spanish couple who ran it offered us a free dinner on the first night and Sangria on the second (don’t mind if I do).

Our hostel!
Our hostel!
Our room
Our room

We chucked our bags in our room, grabbed a free map and head out to explore the city. Starving from the flight (which offered NO complimentary peanuts!), we found a sweet little café and had tea and scones. Being Halloween time the café was decorated in black and orange with spider web cotton and ghouls hanging from every surface. Apparently the Irish LOVE Halloween so this theme continued throughout the whole city. We made our way from one church or castle to the next, including St. Patrick’s and Christchurch Cathedral and the Dublin Castle. These were far more medieval and a nice change from the other European churches I’ve seen.

Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle
Christchurch Cathedral
Christchurch Cathedral

Trinity College (Dublin’s university) was amazing and made me jealous of the students who get to study there. It was built in 1592 (before NZ was even discovered!) and felt like a small town of its own. The campus buildings were beautifully old and white and a big bell tower sat proudly in the middle of the square.

Trinity College
Trinity College

The people of Dublin had a completely different character and charm about them which I can only explain by saying they were “just so Irish”. They were definitely a whole lot crazier (or maybe just drunk) than the ‘posh’ people of Maastricht (refer to ‘Dress to Impress’). The main streets were filled with buskers ranging from cute guitarists and traditional flautists, to men painted as statues. Clusters of people gathered around various performers which created a market vibe that I just loved. We walked through St Stephen’s Green, a huge public park filled with old bridges, ponds and bird-life. Bright autumn leaves littered the ground so naturally I couldn’t help playing in them.

Buskers
Buskers
Swans
Swans
Playing!
Playing!

Returning to the hostel after what felt like 100km of walking (okay maybe a little less than that – just), we filled our tummies with pasta and played cards with a bunch of Aussies we met earlier. After beating everyone many times (not a word of a lie) we headed out to Temple Bar – known as Dublin’s “cultural quarte”. This is an area of the city that preserved its medieval street form with almost as many Irish pubs as there are cobbles on the street! Every bar had live music so we let our ears lead the way. We sat down in The Auld Dubliner and ordered two Bailey’s coffees. We hopped between various pubs including the official Temple Bar where there was an amazing pair playing old favourites on the violin and guitar.

Bailey's coffee
Bailey’s coffee
Temple Bar
Temple Bar
Amazing duo
Amazing duo

On the second day we got up early and ate our complimentary breakfast of coco pops (yuss!!) and cardboard/toast before heading to the river. We walked along until we found another quaint café to grab a coffee. It was called Dawrf Jar and it had the best coffee we’d tasted since being in Europe. The man inside was so sweet, giving us both discounts and directions to find the bar where P.S. I love you was filmed. We wondered back through Temple Bar which looked very different by day and took a detour through parts of the city we hadn’t yet discovered. We bought shamrock pendants for our charm bracelets and planned out all the places we were going to eat (and drink) that night.

Home of the best coffee in Europe!
Home of the best coffee in Europe!
Walking along the river
Walking along the river
Temple Bar by day
The ‘official’ Temple Bar by day

Picking up our friend who had just arrived, we made our way down town to grab some lunch. We ducked in to a small café in Temple Bar and ate home-made vegetable soup and toasted sandwiches (a normal combination apparently). It was delicious and I was so happy to finally get served water without having to buy it for a million dollars! Our next stop was Whelan’s bar – the one Gerard Butler talks about when he says (I quote): “Denise, take Holly to Whelan’s, my favourite pub” (sigh). Sadly it was too early to go in so we just pretended Gerard was inside and we’d meet up with him later.

Whelan's!
Whelan’s!

As always, we managed to find the nearest gelaterie and got ice-cream to eat while listening to more buskers perform in the city. One of the bands who was playing was called Key West (make a mental note and visit Youtube). They sounded amazing and had gathered quite an impressive crowd by the time we joined to listen. Afterwards, we wondered through a line of market tents filled with quirky artwork, souvenirs and clothing as well as free tastes of local products.

Mmmm...
Mmmm…
Irish singers...Mmmm...
Irish singers…Mmmm…

In the late afternoon we decided to be nana’s and take a power nap before the big night out we had planned (don’t judge!). Our dream to have a real dinner in a traditional Irish pub came true when we found a place offering a whole menu of deliciousness for only 10 euros. The two kiwis ordered lamb shanks (of course) and our token Aussie ordered Irish stew – oh my god it was heaven. I couldn’t remember the last time I’d eaten such good, wholesome food and felt SO full. The bar tender made a bet with us that we’d prefer Irish lamb to New Zealand lamb but we said that was impossible. As per usual this was followed by some lame joke about hobbits (like we haven’t heard that one before…).

Just seeing this makes me hungry!
Just seeing this makes me hungry!

After dinner we enjoyed several drinks of free Sangria before taking the directions of our new Kiwi-receptionist-friend to the best pubs in Dublin. Temple Bar was completely packed and full of music and laughter. The others all ordered Guinness (bleh) and I got a cider (still just as Irish!).

Jolly Dublineers
Jolly Dublineers

Struggling to find a free spot to sit we be-friended a couple of Danish boys who had some spare seats at their table. One had been living in Ireland for 8 months and already had a full on Irish accent – I actually didn’t believe he was from Denmark not Ireland. Adopting them as our new tour guides, we finished our drinks and headed to Porterhouse; a multi-story pub with over 100 different types of beer to choose from. The live band was just amazing and it didn’t take long for us to hit the dance floor. We stayed there for quite some time before making our way in and out of various other pubs. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend my last night in Dublin.

New friends!
New friends!

On my last morning we grabbed coffee from the same river café from the day before. The man recognised us and asked us all about the places we’d gone the night before. We made one last trip along the river and through the city before I reluctantly got on the bus back to the airport and flew home. I wasn’t too sad though as I’d had such an amazing couple of days and was so looking forward to meeting up with my Dad in the weekend. Ireland was just as I imagined it would be. Sadly Gerard Butler was nowhere to be found but I’m still convinced my Irish husband is out there somewhere 😉