Our FIE group of 28 took a trip to Galway, Ireland the weekend of October 3rd. After a very early, and long drive, we arrived in the city of Galway at around 1pm that Friday. Since arriving, we had about four hours to explore the city of Galway in daylight. The girls and I mainly spent our time on the very busy and popular, Shop Street. While on Shop Street, we stopped at McDonagh’s, were we were fed the best fish and chips I have eaten so far in Ireland. After stuffing our faces, we continued down Shop Street, and walked into a beautiful jewelry shop. In the very small, cottage like shop, we discovered that the owner made all of the jewelry, shirts, and other trinkets in the store. There, we learned the importance of the claddagh ring and its significance to the Irish and the feelings of love and friendship. We also learned that Galway is the birthplace of the claddagh ring. After walking around some more, discovering small, secret streets, and drinking tea at The Light House, we headed back to the hotel to prepare for a night out. While arriving at Galway, we were informed that it was a huge college town, with students/young adults being 15% of the entire Galway population. We noticed this big dent of the population while out that night. The streets were flooded with young people hoping for a good time. That night in Galway, we spent majority of our night in the famous King’s Head pub. There, we chatted with the locals, and listen to some amazing, live Irish music. It was a great time. Being in Galway made me realize that there is more to the Irish culture outside of Dublin, which, now to me, seems to be very Americanized since visiting Galway. I do wish that we could have had more time in Galway, or better yet, get to spend our semester studying there. Galway was a great, lively, and vibrant city, which I cannot wait to visit again!
Grace Mellor (Blog Post #2)