My name is Raquel Freire, 30, I am a journalist with a specialization in Business Communications. Last year, in 2019, I decided to change my career and my life. I want to become a filmmaker and follow my purpose in life. On January this year I came to Dublin in order to improve my English. Since I intend to take a master’s course abroad, I need a very good score at IELTS Exam. Living in Brazil would have been more difficult to learn and would take more time for me to achieve it. Therefore, here I am.
I researched among English-spoken countries around the world, USA, Canada, New Zealand, but Ireland was the best choice for its costs and benefits. Here in Dublin, besides being cheaper, I can make some money to travel around Europe. So, I did not have any doubt.
Once I took my decision, I have been blessed by God; he provided me with everything I needed: family and friend’s support who helped me with their advice and recommendations, the necessary money to afford it that I did not have by the time I took my decision, and an opportunity work here for a very friendly Irish family. They warmly welcomed me. Just for that, I can affirm that my experience here has been so far amazing. This is my third month here and I am going to give you my first impressions about Dublin.
This is not my first time in this city. I came here for holidays in 2018 to visit my sister who was living here at that time. For this reason, I already knew some places and had an idea about what to expect. I must confess I did not find Dublin the most beautiful, fascinating and spectacular city when I first arrived. It was on wintertime; the cloudy sky, freezing weather and raining days serve well the purpose to hide the beauty of the city. Even though, I found it very organized clean, well-structured and with plenty of pubs, indeed.
Exploring my new habitat
Since my arrival, I have visited few places. So far, the most interesting and my favorite is The Irish Film Institute. I used to go there very often to watch films and have lunch in the Cafe Bar and browse in the book and DVD’s shop store. It is just amazing for film lovers like me (it is what I miss the most in this quarantine period). I also went to the Lighthouse Cinema at Smithfield, Dublin 7. It is a gorgeous, charming and massive venue, though a little bit far away from the city center.
In the constant search for being in touch with nature, I enjoy the Phoenix Park. Other places worth visiting are: The Vikings Museum, National Museum, Science Gallery and daytrips to Malahide village and The Giants Causeway, and, of course, worth your while the Game of Thrones Tour.
As time goes by, I started mingling with the locals and feel belonging. The funniest thing is that I cannot see Dublin from a tourist point-of-view (though, I am still one). I do feel like taking pictures and posting on social medias as I would normally do. I am living in a new place, every day I learn something different and it is amazing. And I feel part of the city, as if I have always lived here.
What are Irish people like?
Irish people are very nice and respectful (at least who I have known). As I said previously, I am living with an Irish family and they treat me very well. Karl and Olaf are two smarts, sweets and well-educated boys whom I am looking after. Since I have talked to other minders at the school, we shared the same impressions on Irish people. For this reason, I must say that this is one of the best jobs to get when arriving here; it is a great opportunity to know more about their culture as well as practicing English.
The bad impression that I had so far (and I hope it changes) was mostly related to the attitude of few Brazilians who have been living here for quite a while. I have noticed that they do not seem to have a well-defined goal. I understand that leaving our countries to take on blue collar jobs to make a living is not that easy. However, there is a purpose for that. We are in the search for something better. What I guess is that some people might be fleeing to Ireland or other countries abroad just to run away from the current situation in Brazil (or even worse, from themselves) and they ended up losing themselves by overworking, staying only among Brazilians or, worse than that, getting drunk, using drugs, doing everything, but taking the time to improve their languages skills. It is such a pity!
In a nutshell, if you would like to improve your English, and still get some money in order to reach out other dreams in your life, come to Dublin. Certainly, you will achieve it. If you do not know what you want, it is important to figure it out before taking any quick decision. It does not go without saying that home is the best place for it.