The first week of this trip in Ireland has been spectacular. It has been a little crazy with all the traveling and moving from hotel to hotel. In one week, I have experienced more than you ever would by sitting in a class room. The Irish really have a strong love for their country and stick by their beliefs. I have learned three things from being over here. The first is that their slang language is very different from American slang. Secondly, their pubs and restaurants have better advertisements on them. Lastly, their magazines have a lot more ads pertaining to their culture then I ever would’ve imagined. These things very easy to pick up on day by day.
The language barrier was not hard to pick up on during our stay here, but the accents were very tough to understand in Northern Ireland. For example, when on our bus tour, our guide Connor, said things like cheers instead of thanking you. He also said a wee bit long which meant a little bit longer. The last one I picked up on was ride which meant a good-looking person. We obviously have slang back home that they wouldn’t be able to pick up on, but it was very interesting to see how they communicate on a day to day basis. I heard these slang words used most often at pubs or walking on the street. Another communication barrier is the lack of cell service and wifi in the remote areas. This makes it difficult to stay in touch with the rest of the world, but it seems like the locals get by without service.
Moving on, the pubs and restaurants have very different signs informing folks what goes on inside the bar. From what I noticed in the Temple bar area was that as you walked by each bar there was a clear description of what each bar had. For example, when you passed Oliver Saint John Gogarty’s it said traditional Irish music seven days a week. The other thing is that restaurants clearly say what type of food they serve and have a menu in the window. Back home it seems that music places will only say bar and girl or simply just restaurant. These is a very simple way to communicate to tourists what each place offers, and helps people decide where they want to go.
The last difference in media I noticed in Ireland was how different the magazines are. I purchased a “Golf Digest” magazine while on the bus to Dublin to pass time. While I was reading it, I noticed that they changed the magazine to the Irish golfer’s taste. They were advertising about the best courses in the country, and even included Irish slang. They also have more coverage of the European Tour instead of the PGA Tour. This makes a lot of sense to have different publications of a magazine because you will always get a bigger audience and more readers. I would’ve never learned this if I didn’t come to Ireland, but it was cool to read something from a different perspective.
All in all, the experience in Northern Ireland and Ireland was one of a lifetime. I got to take part in many things such as climbing the tallest sea cliffs in Europe, pour a pint of Guinness, and explore the Jameson distillery. These are all memories that I won’t forget and the views of the country will never leave my mind. The coolest part however was being able to see how their ways of life are different, and how the pubs are nothing like an American bar. Learning about media has helped me understand and pick up on the differences of our two countries.