After an amazing week it was time to say good-bye to Ireland. We had breakfast at the Hostel before the bus picked us up and brought us to the airport, where we waited for the boarding of our flight. We had a great time on the green island and will take a lot of memories and experiences back home. Once more Kimberley wanted to share her experience with us:
today we had to get up very early in the morning, because our bus left Dublin at 9 o’clock. Our bus was too late (traffic in Dublin), so we all had to run to the gate to catch our plane. We were lucky, we reached our plane in time;). Our flight to Vienna took 3 hours. At the airport our teachers said goodbye to us. That was the end of our holiday in Ireland. It was fun!
On Wednesday morning we said our good-byes to our host families and Carrigaline. The bus collected us and we began our journey back home to Austria. But before our flight would take off on Thursday we got to see more of Ireland’s capital: Dublin. So we drove all the way from the South to the West coast and got a great tour around this beautiful city. We saw a lot of historical buildings and the University of Dublin and took some awesome pictures to show everyone in Austria. After our tour finished we checked in our Hostel and then it was time to explore the city ourselves. Here is the impression of the day from Kimberley:
today we left our host family and drove to Dublin by bus. In Dublin we all made a city tour. It was very interesting, but it was too long. After that we had some free time in Dublin. Some of our class mates bought something for their parents. I think Dublin is a very big and beautiful city.“
Tuesday was already the last day of our English classes, so we had breakfast at home as usual and got onto the bus to the H2 College. We had some more time to prepare our topics for our presentations in the morning with Lucy and Jacqui. Then it was time that both groups had to gather in the downstairs room. We listened to all of the presentations and were happy and proud of ourselves, that we managed to present in English and got confident in talking. Afterwards it was time to say good-bye to everyone. We said our thank yous and waved our good-byes as the bus brought us away from the H2 College. Our destination for today was Kinsale, a lovely and pretty little town by the sea. We met our tour guide at Charles Fort, a star shaped fort, where we could see all of Kinsale from up here and the endless sea. We had a good bit of fun walking around. The highlight of our tour was definitely being at Garrettstown Beach. We were really lucky that we had such great weather to be at the beach. We jumped around and dipped our toes into the sea.
When we woke up Monday morning the sun was shining. Perfect for our plan we had for the afternoon. But first of all we got up and had breakfast with our host families. We walked to our bus stops, waited for the bus to arrive and had our morning lessons with Lucy and Jacqui. Today we prepared our Irish topic we would present on Tuesday. Some chose Gaelic Sports, others Irish music or traditional food. So we were busy working in our small groups, getting as much information as we could. When we finished we gathered in front of the H2 College and walked down to the GAA, where we would have our activity for the afternoon: an introduction into Gaelic Sports. We met our trainers, Rebecca and Cieran, who taught us the rules and moves of Hurling and Gaelic Football. We had a lot of fun, running around in the sun. We really had the perfect weather for doing some sports.
On Sunday we felt like the luckiest people in the whole world. First of all we had a great morning with our host families. Some of us experienced the taste of real Irish breakfast or went to the beach, but in general we just spent some amazing time with our host families, who showed us around. For the afternoon we had a lovely trip to Blarney Castle and Gardens planned. The weather forecast was really bad for today, but luckily the winds were so strong, the bad weather just passed us over night. Today the sky was blue, with the occasional clouds, but mostly sunny. So we were happy to have such a good weather for our trip to Blarney.
Saturday began with having breakfast at our host families. Afterwards we walked to our bus stops, where the bus collected us and brought us to the H2 College. We walked straight to our class rooms and began the English lessons with Lucy and Jacqui. The weather was quiet bad, rainy, cold and windy. But that didn’t matter, because in the afternoon we had a great Ceili dance lesson with Fionan, who taught us the right moves for the traditional Irish dance. André wanted to share his impression of the day with us:
Today Daniel, Lukas and I got up at around 7. For breakfast we had cereals and I even ate five (!) small waffles. So we were ready for the lessons! The English lessons were fun. We got fairy stones with pictures on them and we had to make up a story. Our teachers Jacqui als Lucy played many other funny games like quizzes and vocab games with us. One game was about English and German phrases. It was interesting. After the four lessons we had a long break. We went for a short walk with our Austrian teachers and saw a church and bought sweets and ice cream in a shop. When we came back to school, we had some Ceili-dance lessons with Fionán. All of us learned six dances with funny names („2-hand Jig“, „2-hand Reel“, „Walls of Limerick“, „Seige of Ennis“, „Peeler and the Goat“ & „Shoe the Donkey“). At the beginning it was difficult but at the end it was funny. For me the best thing of the day was the dancing.“
On Friday we woke up after a short night and were really excited about what is going to happen today. We stood up and had a lovely breakfast with our host families, who afterwards brought us to the bus stops, where the H2 Bus collected us and drove us to Minane Bridge. Located in this small village is the H2 College. We drove up windy roads, saw endless fields of green and from time to time some houses. The H2 College is a really modern building, but in the early 19th century it was only a small house for a lot of boys and girls who attended school here. So it all got rebuilt and new additions were made, to make it modern and suitable for bigger classes and events. We learned all that from the introduction we got in the morning. We also were introduced to Jacqui and Lucy, our two English teachers for the upcoming days. After a quick test we were divided into two groups – one group for each teacher. Then it was time to begin the English lessons. For the afternoon we were collected by the bus again and drove to Cork City, the second largest city of Ireland. Here we had a great tour around, took a lot of pictures and learned some interesting facts. Here is another diary entry of Kimberley, who wants to tell us more about the experience they made:
today it was our first day at school. After 4 lessons of English speaking activities, we drove to Cork by bus. At first we made a city tour and visited some churches and the university. Then we finally had some free time in Cork. While some students went to McDonalds, Anja, Patricia, Lena and I went to the Superdry Store. We also visited other shops. Two hours later our bus driver Robert picked us up and drove us to Carrigaline. Back at our host family, we played Hurling. I think it is a very difficult sport, but it was also very funny. After that we went to bed.“
Our adventurous journey to the island of evergreen fields, sheep, rainbows and leprechants began on Thursday late afternoon in Vienna. We all gathered at the airport, where we waited for the boarding to begin. When the time came, we stepped onto the airplane, got seated and flew all the way from Austria to Ireland, Dublin to be exact. But the capital was just a brief stop, we wouldn’t see much of the largest city of Ireland for now. We got our of the airport and were welcomed by our bus driver, who brought us to our final destination: Carrigaline in County Cork. Here we were warmly welcomed by our host families, who brought us to their houses. We talked for a little while, just to get to know each other, before we were happy to go to bed and get some rest. Kimberley wanted to share her impression of the first day with us:
today we met at the airport in Vienna. We all were so excited about our trip to Ireland. The flight was so boring so we were so glad that the plane landed safely in Dublin after three hours. Half an hour later we drove to Carrigaline by bus. When we arrived there at 22:30, our host mother picked us up. After that we spoke a little bit with the host family members and then we went to bed.“