Parul Verma, an M.A Culture and Colonialism student at NUI Galway shares her experience of Ireland and its people…

In Ireland, if you ask a stranger for directions, you will get a friendly and helpful reply along with a smile. When I came here first, I was truly blown away by the amount of smiles everywhere. Galway , being a small city, meant that its irresistible charm had to be explored on foot. As I moved out of my hostel, with an undying spirit to explore its beauty, I often confused myself in between the laneways. This confusion revealed a side of Galway I otherwise would have missed out on. As I approached people for directions, not only did they guide me, but few of them dropped me off to my destination. As I said to one such person “ thank you sir, you are indeed kind”. He replied, “..we are Irish.”

Amazed by the humility and refreshed by the kindness, you will witness some needed positivity here in Ireland. As I say, its the aura of the souls that brightens the place. Or perhaps, it’s the beauty of the place that sparks and ignites the kindness from within. Whatever it is, it sure is creating magic!
The holistic growth (spiritual, emotional and educational) of a student is a much needed milestone, that would aid him/her for preparing for a positive tomorrow. Studying in Ireland gives you that opportunity. The environment is peaceful and friendly. You will experience these traits in everyone you meet which in turns imparts a positive attitude within you. After all, we all are a product of our environment .

Irish people are generous, beyond their means. Oh yes, you read it correctly. As I stepped into a Irish traditional pub in Galway ,enchanted by the traditional Irish music, I heard a friendly argument over the next table about who is going to pay the bill for the food and the drinks. I am talking about friends, maybe acquaintances or even perfect strangers that they have just met. They are so polite in the linguistics they use, you would love to lose an argument with them. Irish people are notoriously generous, often beyond their means. As silly as they argument sounded, it revealed a generous trait of each Irishmen. A trait that is much needed for a society to collectively survive and bloom with peace.

I would recommend each one you reading this, come to Ireland, study here. By the time you complete your academic term, I guarantee you two things. You will be in love with the country and its countrymen. Secondly, you will transformed as an individual, both academically and psychologically.