It is time to say good-bye to the host families and to Ireland. The bus left very early in the morning - at 5.30am and headed back to Dublin airport. The time went by too quickly! We wish all students and teachers a pleasant flight home.
Looking forward to seeing you again! Best wishes from the H2 Ireland Team!
It is the final day of English lessons already and the students have done some research on Ireland related topics such as Food & Drinks, St. Patrick's Day, Guinness, Irish Myths & Legends. They will present these topics to their class mates before our English teachers will hand out the certificates and students reports. Lucy, Jackie and Brian will also award the best three students of the week! However, this will be difficult as ALL students were lovely and very motivated. All our three teachers were thrilled with the good behaviour of the students. Well done!
In the afternoon the students will be picked up once more from our busdriver Michael who will bring them to Kinsale. Barry, our tourguide, will await them at Charles Fort. From there the students will have a fabulous view onto Kinsale and the Atlantic sea. He will inform them about the town's history and the famous battle of 1601 which involved Irish, Spanish and English soldiers. They will then make their way down into Kinsale and will walk through the narrow streets. During the "Historic Stroll" they will hear about a "White Lady", the "Giant of Kinsale" and some pirate stories. Afterwards they will have some free time to go for a coffee and some ice cream and will meet back at the bus. The next stop will be the cliffs at the "Old Head of Kinsale" - beautiful and stunning from there! The final stop is the sandy beach in Garrettstown. The weather is ideal for dipping in the toes into the water!
The English lessons are finished and the students are making their way over to the GAA pitch in Minane Bridge. The will meet three members of the Gaelic Athletic Association who will show them the rules of Hurling and Gaelic Football. Hurling is the fastest ball game in the world and is played with a "hurley" (wooden stick) and a "sliotar" (ball). Gaelic Football involves hand-play as well. Let's see how our students get on :-) The weather is just perfect for this Gaelic Sports afternoon with sunshine and temperatures around 23 degrees.
The second day of English lessons with Lucy, Jackie and Brian is now finished and the students are heading over to Cork City for a guided tour. They will stop at St. Finbarr's Cathedral and at the Cork University campus. The final stop will be a walk through the famous English Market that got visited by Prince Charles last week! The Market celebrated its 230 years of existance. It is a lovely local market with fresh produce such as vegetables, meats, fish, dairy and flowers. In the later afternoon the students will have some free time to explore the town on their own. Hopefully it will not be too hot in downtown Cork! :-)
Summer is here - another day with high temperatures in Ireland! The students were able to sleep in - it is Sunday morning and the host families and students are enjoying a relaxed morning with a typical Irish breakfast (black pudding, toast, beans, fried egg, tomatoes, sausages and mushrooms). Around midday they were picked up by our bus and were brought to Blarney Castle - a 600 year old fort that is known for its Blarney Stone. Anyone who kisses the famous stone will get the "gift of the gab" (the ability to speak easily and confidently in a way that makes people want to listen to you and believe you). The view from the top of the castle is really nice and one can take in the beauty of the gardens and castle grounds. Later on the group walked through the "Poison Garden", over to the "Fern Garden", passing a tuja tree and Blarney House. In the "Rock Close" they climbed up the "Wishing Steps" backwards and with eyes closed in order to get a wish granted! With the nice weather it was the perfect day to spent the afternoon in Blarney.
In the evening the students met back at St. Mary's school for some Ceili dances with our dance teacher Fionan. They started inside the hall but since it was such a lovely evening they finished the lesson outside the school. Fionan showed them some typical Irish dances that are danced in different sets and put on some typical Irish traditional music. It was a fun evening.
Another sunny morning - what a wonderful weather in Ireland! In the morning the students were picked up from the different bus stops in Carrigaline and were driven to the H2 International Academy in Minane Bridge. Lucy, Jackie and Brian are their English teachers for the week. After a short introduction and a written and multiple choice placement test, the students were divided into three smaller groups. The lessons are now well under way and will be finished at 1.40pm today. In the afternoon the group will head to Cobh, a little town right beside Cork's harbour. They will visit the Titanic Experience which is located in the original White Star Line office building and will learn more about the 123 passengers who boarded Titanic back in 1912! The will see first and thirds class cabins and will receive a boarding card with a name of one passenger. At the end of their "journey" they will find out about the fate of "their" passenger. Since the weather is so nice - the students will probably get some ice cream afterwards and will go for a stroll along the pier.
A sunny morning was greeting the students. After breakfast Michael, the busdriver brought the group into Dublin city centre. Liam, the tour guide, entered the bus on Nassau Street and from there on the city tour started, passing Georgian houses and significant buildings, stopping at St. Patrick's Cathedral and Phoenix Park. The park is one of Europe's largest city parks and in August the pope will hold mass here for one million people who will all gather in the extensive park. After the tours was over the students enjoyed some free time in Dublin and got most of their souvenir shopping done. It was lovely to stroll along Grafton Street and to listen to all the buskers playing music at every corner. At 2.30pm the students left Dublin behind and headed to Carrigaline in County Cork. They arrived at 6:45pm and were welcomed by the host families who had already prepared a delicious dinner.
With only five minutes delay 43 students and three teachers from EBG Hollabrunn arrived to Dublin airport. They were welcomed by Lisa and Michael from the H2 team. Once the luggage was stored away in the bus they made their way up a nice Irish pub called "The Balrothery Inn". Nice food was served to the group such as fish & chips, chicken curries, pasta and burgers. Around 9.45pm the group checked into the hostel for the night.