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Entries in Travel (2)

Tuesday
Aug112009

July by Holly Rud

London for the first week with Matt was a great way to ease into being on my own. Homesickness was never a problem since I had someone traveling with me initially and so when I got to Dublin, I was able to get right to work! At first things were slow, but I noticed how much easier it was to find more information when I used Google Ireland. More relevant articles and websites came up. I found some great research articles that will be very helpful in my paper and I also was able to get into contact with the person that did the research. Unfortunately, he won’t be able to meet with me but he said he would be willing to help me in any other way possible!


When I haven’t been researching, I’ve been trying to see as much of Ireland as I can. Dublin is a great city and everyone is very friendly! The friends I have made while being here will last a lifetime. I feel like I’ve really become immersed in the culture and have gotten to experience Ireland in a way that can only happen when one stops being a tourist and really starts to live in the country. The roommates in my apartment are very friendly and from many diverse places. There is Naga from India, Marc from Holland and Marcus from Sweden. And then Morgen, who I’ve really gotten to be great friends with! She’s from Seattle. We have done a lot of traveling together and have had some great experiences. Just recently, we went up to Belfast and met with an acquaintance that a mutual friend put me in contact with. It was great experiencing Belfast with someone that lives there. We saw the Giant’s Causeway and did a Black Taxi tour of the IRA and UDA areas.


With July coming to an end, researching is going well. It does get a bit frustrating at times with people on their long holidays but I’m confident that August will be a productive month!

Thursday
Aug062009

Tarragona by Megan Benrud

I met two young men from the UK at the hostel I was staying at in Barcelona [great hostel by the way—Centric Point Barcelona; they take people of all ages!] and they asked if they could tag along with me to a smaller city right outside of Barcelona, Tarragona. We took the train there and on our way to the train I lost the guys and thought to myself, “what an adventure this could be if this sort of thing keeps happening!” But, we found each other and missed the train for Tarragona. Luckily, there was another an hour later!


On the train it was fairly packed with people, but luckily we got spots for the hour and half ride. The train ran over something and missed a stop but we eventually arrived at our destination. There we used public transportation to get to our hostel which was really a hotel—with air conditioning and a TV…woo! We took it easy that day and went to the beach, knowing that I’d have to start doing more interviews the coming days.


The next day I headed to the port [Tarragona is on the Mediterranean and is actually one of the busiest ports in the region] to see if I could speak with someone about trade, but was unable to. I was told to come back early on Monday as they would be then be there.

 

So, I decided to wander about and purchase the things I needed to [jump drive, flip flops]. Of course, I love shopping and ended up in another store that has goods from Africa—from masks to earrings. I started up a conversation with the owner and I actually ended up coming back and interviewing him. It was quite the interview as much of the time we spoke of politics!


There it was again—the migrant worker coming to Spain. I decided after that interview that would be the new lens through which this project would be brought to light. I always tell myself coincidence can’t be more than three times… it’s something else telling you something.