Mixed but positive view of Dublin’s fair city
2018-01-15 16:25:00 -

Florian Rauschmann


My experience in Dublin started with travelling from the airport to meet my host family. I am a teacher from Germany with the Erasmus programme, which places students from across Europe in other European universities. My university is looking to exchange students with Ireland, so I embarked on with a group of fellow teachers on a two-week visit to improve my English and to learn more about Irish culture, history and daily life.


Passing through the inner city, I noted the smaller buildings which created a homey feeling, far better than walking between skyscrapers. The view of the higher points of town is breathtaking, and it would be a real loss to plaster the inner city with far taller buildings. 


However, there were quite a few empty and abandoned buildings, an impression which reappeared often during my time in Dublin. When I asked a taxi driver, he replied it’s still the aftermath of the recession and that, hopefully, Brexit would bring new life – and money – to the Irish capital.


Dublin is a multicultural city and from what I have seen, people get along very well. When strolling through town, one hears various languages, but all are able to find a common denominator in the English language when it comes to asking for directions, or asking for items in a restaurant, pub or shop.


True to the stories you may have heard, Dublin has seemingly thousands of pubs, and I love the atmosphere in them. In many pubs, the live music seems to lighten the mood and people often tap their feet or fingers to the rhythm of the songs. 


Temple Bar was an experience of its own, but the travel guides on various tours recommended a variety of pubs where locals go to enjoy a pint and something to eat. The pub food was surprisingly good, though I still wonder why red chicken curry is listed as a ‘traditional Irish’ dish. The people, in general, are politer here and it was really easy to get to know and talk to them in pubs or during a bus ride.


I have already learned some Irish words. I love that it is taught in schools and it appears on signs, in buses and in advertisements. Florian is ainm dom. That one I won’t forget.


There were also some sad experiences, like the homeless people who are begging in the streets. There are homeless in every large city around the world, but in the city centre of Dublin this is really an issue. Winter is coming and the needy will suffer. I hope there is some plan to support and protect them from the elements.


There are also large amounts of traffic in Dublin. Some of the cars only have one occupant, which leads to congested roads all over the town. Public transport is quite cheap and efficient, but due to the traffic situation also unpredictable. I took the same bus every morning and the difference in the journey time from day to day was as much as 45 minutes.


Overall, Dublin is a really cool city to visit and I would definitely recommend it to friends and colleagues. To everyone at home I’ll just say: “It was grand.”

Florian Rauschmann is a teacher from Germany.



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