It is never easy to adapt to different circumstances, environments or even languages. So, what happens when you have to face all of those changes in your life plus the fact that you’ll be Au Pairing in Ireland?
I wrote this article with the only purpose of telling my experience as an Au Pair in Ireland, as you might have guessed, I wasn’t born there, so yeah, I know that "I just arrived to a different country" feeling.
What really helped me to adapt easily to this new environment was to learn as much as I could about it. I read a lot about the people there, their habits, manners and even about the weather! Really, when it comes to being an Au Pair in Ireland, it is always advisable to learn a bit about their lifestyle as some customs may be different from the ones in your country. Here is a bit of my experience and certain Irish facts that I think would be helpful for you to know before Au Pairing in Ireland.
If you were expecting some kind of everyone-looks-alike society, then you should read more about Ireland and its extensive legacy. In fact, thanks to an incredible amount of immigration from almost every part of the world in the past years, the Irish culture is actually a wide and diverse one. What’s interesting about this, is that the share of foreigners in Dublin is higher than anywhere else on the island, how about that!
One thing for sure is that you’ll never run out of activities. It is very probable that you’ll assist quite often to all of the celebrations of different kinds such as dance, films, art festivals among many others. If you stay the whole spring, then you’ll be lucky enough to enjoy the most colourful event, the celebration St Patrick’s Day, a complete day (or even week) dedicated to the national patron saint.
Every time I talk about my Au Pair in Ireland experience, at least someone asks me about the food. No! Fish and Chips is not the only food you’ll find, please, erase that stereotype out of your mind. In Ireland, the push for locally sourced food ingredients is quite strong wherever you go. You’ll for sure fin some pubs with a no-that-wide menu, but you’ll also find a huge variety of ethnic food choices, pop-up cafés, organic shops and even gastropubs!
As I’ve already mentioned one stereotype, let me tell you that Oscar Wilde and U2 is not everything you’ll read or listen to. Yeah, they are incredibly good artists, who also happen to proudly be Irish, but that’s not near half of the talent and art that you’ll find in Ireland. Here you’ll be able to enjoy lots of different films, music and other artistic expressions from several local artists and all of the international ones. Yeah, it is an Island but we are not in another galaxy.
Finally, another common question is: What about the people? Are they cold or friendly?
I’d like to say that you can’t have such a general answer to that question. It is just like in many other European countries, some will be friendly and other will feel rather cold. It is just a matter of luck and of course, manners. If you are respectful all the time, you’ll be more likely to receive an equal treatment, and who knows, maybe making a few new friends while on a walk.
If you are planning on taking a chance Au Pairing in Ireland or just want to read more about it, I truly recommend this Au Pair Agency, I’ve had the best experiences working with them!