Americans Allegra Johnson, Alex Kruse and Gretchen Schutz – studying in Dun Laoighaire – told us what they think of Dublin culture.
You here long? Have you been here before? What do you think of Ireland?
Gretchen: We’re studying our first semester here so we’ve been here since January and we’re here till May. We’re all studying lots of different things but while we’re here it’s mostly Irish literature and stuff like that.
Allegra: First time out of the country for me. I’m from Iowa.
Alex: Me too. My home city has a population of 60,000.
Gretchen: My nearest city is Madison which is the capital of Wisconsin, but we don’t have – like – public transport like this. It’s nothing like this. I love it – it’s so much different than back in the States.
How does the social scene compare?
Alex: There’s a lot of groups of kids going out here.
Gretchen: A lot of people are accepting here, and very welcoming as well.
Allegra: Live music here is a big plus because back in the States it’s just the bar scene whereas here there are good places to enjoy music and a lot more options.
Ireland’s culture of alcohol. Is our reputation as a nation of alcoholics justified? Do you drink more here?
Alex: I don’t know! I think it’s about even to what I drink back home. I think that the atmosphere here is different to binge-drinking back home, which I’ve found is more popular than in Ireland – you’re not drinking quite as much in Dublin City, just casual drinking.
Allegra: I am not of age back home so I enjoy a nice pint in the pub!
Gretchen: The drinks are a lot cheaper in the States, so for me to find myself drinking here is weird because it’s a lot more expensive but like Alex said, we’re not here to binge-drink – we’re just casually drinking now.
Touristy stuff! Do you do it?
Alex: I try not to do tourist stuff.
Allegra: You want to see the things that make Ireland Ireland and luckily because we are here for so long, we have the chance to be more integrated into the culture. But as far as going on bus tours and things like that, sometimes it’s the only way to see the things you want to see.