Day 1 in Ireland was an absolute blast! Right off the plane we were greeted with a customs officer that was friendly, polite, and helpful. Our guide Hayley shared a very similar attitude and really helped us get comfortable in a brand new city. She taught us the best ways to get around and important land marks like the St. Patricks and Church of Christ Cathedrals. Within Dublin, one of the first observations I made was the spectrum of political opinions. On nearly every lamp post were 2 signs, one argued in favor of a pro-choice perspective and the other argued a pro-life perspective. Although I knew the Irish were very politically opinionated, I did not expect to see as many political advertisements as I did. While walking with our full 22 person group, lead by Hayley, another tour group recognized we were American and the leader of that tour said “Hey Trump huh?” This type of behavior was entirely expected by us all. With as unorthodox of a president as he is, we expected comments/questions from other groups of people.
Susanne described the importance of small talk within relationship management for the Irish. Typically, the Irish tend to be less direct and will always use small talk before asking a question. For example, if you go to someones office, it is more appropriate to ask how they are doing even if the answer is typical “doing grand, and you?” In the U.S. small talk is polite but it is still entirely appropriate to be direct. Americans will often get right to the point instead of using small talk before hand.
Overall, today was a great day and I am looking forward to learning and experiencing more of what Dublin has to offer!