After a few hours of practicing and improving, getting to know one another, and playing some intense games (where I may have gotten a helmet to the face, broke my nail, and gained some shiny bruises on my legs), we got to spend a while jumping off the pier and doing seal launches. I was pretty excited to do the seal launch, which is where your boat is on the edge of the pier and someone pushes you off and you drop into the water from pretty high up. It was a blast! We finished the trip with Scrumdiddly's ice cream in Dun Laoghaire (even after being in the freezing cold water) and it was some of the best ice cream I've ever had.
I spent the day in the sun, gained a significant amount of freckles on my face, and met some new friends. It was a great day all the way around. But as many of you may have seen, I got a call soon after I returned back to UCD on Sunday. I lost my dog Buddie on Sunday. It is a pretty hard loss on me, especially being so far from home. It just goes to show that no matter where you are and what sort of adventures you're creating for yourself, not everything is perfect and you will still face hard times. Buddie was a loved member of our family for the past 10 years and will be missed. Thanks for all of the condolences I received from many of my friends and family!
I spent yesterday doing some catch up things and recovering a bit from all the activities of the weekend. I got some laundry done, did a 5 mile run (and finding a new running park thanks to my friend Fiona), and actually studied (because I promise you all I am actually in school over here)! I walked around Dublin for a bit, finding new roads full of new cafes and restaurants I'm going to need to try. I took some time to admire all sorts of different parts of the city I hadn't found yet. I'm a little obsessed with all the doors in Dublin that are different colors! It is so unique.
Last night a huge group of us (current Purdue students, UCD and DIT students who have studied at Purdue, new friends from Colorado and Australia, and all of my roommates) went to Johnny Fox's pub, one of the oldest and most famous pubs in Ireland. Also, it is the highest set pub in Ireland. It was such a neat place and I got to share the experience with the best people. There was live music (by a guy that sounded like Johnny Cash) and Morgan even got a birthday song just for her. It was a perfect evening for a time when I needed a pick me up.
I've been here a full month now and only have 3 left. I know it sounds silly to say "only 3 months left" but the time is flying by. I can't wait to jam pack the next months with as much as I can and come home to all of you as a changed person! I'm learning and growing each day, and every day I realize this program is more than I could've hoped for.