EXCLUSIVE: Erin Opens Up: The Truth About Ireland! by Erin Riordan

By Rita Skeeter

Earlier, I sat down with OU student, Erin R, to discuss her recent travels to Ireland and her nitty-gritty experiences in the Land of Sheep. During our riveting interview, Erin confided in me the shocking truth about her time in Ireland. Brace yourself and grab your tissues for what Erin has said to be her final statement on the matter. The complete, unedited interview begins.

RS: So, Erin, why are you finally deciding to wear your heart on your sleeve and confess your deepest darkest actions whilst in Ireland?
ER: Um, I don’t know about deep and dark, but I just really wanted to tell my story. How do you describe six weeks of an incredible experience in only 3 blog posts, you know? I just want to be able to answer all the questions that people are most likely to ask me about my time here.
RS: Right, well, then let’s get to the secret-sharing. While you were in Letterkenny, I assume that you frequented the night life. Regrets?
ER: Actually, Letterkenny is a really lovely place at night. The pubs are a great way to meet locals and learn some interesting things. I learned the Irish word for “cheers!” It’s “Slainte!” pronounced slan-cha. Actually, our group has had some of the best times going to karaoke nights.
RS: Ah, so you frequent karaoke nights? You must think you have some talent to be able to get up on stage and sing in front of a group of rowdy Irishmen.
ER: Actually, karaoke was never rowdy. In fact, the best karaoke night we had was a karaoke competition on the island of Inis Mor–one of the Aran Islands. There were only two groups of people competing, the Yanks–that’s what they called us–and the Hens, a term for an Irish bachlorette party.

Waiting for Karaoke Night on Inis Mor!

ER (Cont’d):Many times when our group would get up to sing, the Hens would join us! And at the very end, we won the competition and all of us Yanks went up on stage and sang “Hold On” by Wilson Phillips. We won 100 Euro! It was such a magical night.

The Yanks and the Hens!

RS: So, you would say running around with a bunch of scantily dressed hens is the best memory you have of Ireland?
ER: Well, singing with them was certainly one of the best memories I have of the Aran Islands. Another one would be when I climbed all the way up to Dun Aengus cliffs! It was amazingly beautiful and out of this world.

The pathway up to Dun Aengus.

ER (Cont’d): It was such a rocky path up to the fort and cliffs that I couldn’t believe I actually managed to climb all the way without tripping or twisting an ankle…

Me on the cliffs! I had to sit down because the wind was so powerful…

RS: Well, that’s all very interesting… Now, tell me about your group. What sort of dirty drama occurred in that small apartment complex?
ER: Our group was fantastic. I have been on so many group trips, and I have never felt so attached like I do with this group. We are all so diverse yet all so alike. We are seriously like a family.

Gag. Well, apart from your “family”, you’re pretty useless out on your own, isn’t that right? How did your terrible sense of direction and crippling fear of being alone in a strange place affect your time in Dublin?
ER: Well, it is true that I have a terrible sense of direction. Which probably added to my anxiety of wandering Dublin by myself on Sunday.
RS: Why did your so-called “family” abandon you and leave you to the harsh streets of downtown Dublin?
ER: They didn’t abandon me. Truth is, I could have gone with them if I wanted. On our last day of our Dublin trip, everyone had their own agendas and split off into groups. Some wanted to go home early, some wanted to go shopping. Unfortunately, no one wanted to go site-seeing with me, so I was left to my own devices.
After wandering the streets looking for bus 78A to take me to the Guinness Storehouse, I was stopped by a young woman who asked me if I needed help. She said she had seen me walk the same sidewalk back and forth for the last 20 minutes. I guess I looked just as lost as I felt. After helping me get pointed in the right direction, I successfully made it to the Guinness Storehouse. It was exhilarating being on my own, and there were so many kind people who offered me assistance and took pictures for me!

I made it to the Guinness Storehouse by myself!

ER (Cont’d): It was a fantastic building. I even took a class on how to pour my own Guinness! (I have the video on my Facebook!) Afterwards, I realized that I would be rushed to make the 1pm bus back to Letterkenny, so I decided to take it easy and enjoy my beautiful afternoon in Dublin on a double-decker tour bus!

Sitting at the top of a double-decker bus tour… So very windy. So very fun

ER (Cont’d): The tour took me around the entire city, including stops at Trinity College, the Dublin Zoo, the President’s house, the viking area, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral! I actually rode it twice around… It was amazing. And I had still had plenty of time to catch a bus back to Letterkenny. It really was an incredible experience.
So, what you’re telling me is, that you had a fantastic time in Ireland. All in all, it was a great experience. No drama, no injuries, no death, no scandals. Just…fun and good times?
ER: Precisely. I couldn’t have said it better myself.



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