Pretty soon I realized that the Irish people have a couple of peculiarities: they are extremely polite and open-minded. For instance, they talk straight away about topics which Austrians would hesitate to address. Moreover, punctuality is not the biggest virtue among the Irish. During my first week of university, I noticed that the timetable is only a guideline.
For a project - to which I will come back towards the end of this book - I took notes of when classes started. Throughout the semester he began 10 minutes too late on average and a few times even 30 minutes or more. However, you adapt to their system rather quickly and start to enjoy the extra minutes of sleep in the morning. Apart from that, students often come and go whenever they want, which doesn’t seem to bother any lecturer.
Exceptions prove the rule
In general, classes tend to be less strict and at least at my modules the focus was on individual tuition. Lectures were usually called by their first names and even they didn’t take a narrow view on punctuality themselves. They almost treated their students to nicely by pushing back deadlines or exempting certain students from presentations.
For some reason, many Irish students we’re not fond of public speaking or presenting their work or ideas in front of the class. Anyway, there was one teacher that was - unlike the others - really strict and kept telling the students don’t never make it in the industry - very optimistic.
While the majority of foreign students studied business, only four of us were in visual communications. And some modules, I was the only non-Irish person and so I had a chance to get to know some locals. Since all the subjects I chose we’re taught in the same year I was almost always with the same students.
Thankfully they didn’t ignore the strange Austrian guy and integrated me into their classroom. Soon I regularly joined for lunch where we discussed all the sundry over coffee or gluten-free candy bar (most disgusting thing ever). Anyway, I’m really glad that I also found some Irish friends who brightened up the day at university or who I could join for a pint or Ramen afterwards.