Barbara Perna (Italy)

Barbara Perna

Today we will be looking at Barbara's experiences in Ireland while she was completing a 3 month internship as part of her Marketing Degree. She gives a funny and honest account of her experiences of moving to another country, learning English and Irish culture.

Barbara (Italian)

A great sage named Lao Tzu said:

"A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step" Travelling helps to grow, to discover new places, make new experiences.The journey not only broadens the mind, it builds the mind. The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. When I arrived in Dublin, I realized that my life was changing:“Okay, now I'm alone, I have to do everything myself”.The first day I walked like a vagabond with these words carved in my mind and heart:"Life is a mirror: if you smile it looks smiling" So I armed myself with my most sincere smile to address these three months in the best way.

"The wind pushes the travellers in a thousand worlds between inside and outside ... A labyrinth of thoughts, leave room for dreamers" (Litfiba)

First day in the new house:

I check in the new house with my father and I begin to see one of the 24 people who live there, I introduce myself to someone, in the meantime, the housekeeper invites me to sit down in the living room, so I sit on one of the sofas.After less than five minutes two guys appear shirtless and greet me and my father, I become as red as a strawberry, and my father: "Very nice this house, is very ...friendly! " I said, "Oh, yeah, sure! ..." becoming more and more red. This was my first day at home, an Oscar!

First Day at work:

I prepared well for my first day on the job, a nice dress, heels and so on, dressed to impress. I tell my boss that I will be in the office at 8 o’clock, but of course, I get lost and can’t find the address. I started asking strangers for directions on the street. After much toing and froing I finally arrived at the building where the company was located. However I couldn’t find the room in which the office was located in. I call my boss and tell her: "Sorry to bother you while you're working, but I can't find the entrance of the office" so she tells me that someone will come to reception and show me the way. I was expecting a future colleague in a suit and tie. To my surprise though a strange looking boy dressed as a rock singer arrived to meet me. For the first day I wore heels and a nice dress, I find myself in front of this guy and I think "Okay, I was wearing the wrong clothing"

The strange boy brings me into the office and I meet my other colleagues. They are two guys quiet and silent. I sit in the chair and start working, the director tells me what to do, and I, of course, can understand only 10% of what she says.Needless to say, I felt like an idiot at the beginning.But now, after 2 months I feel much better and more confident at my English. I first asked my boss to speak more slowly, now when she talks to me and looks at me as if to ask if I understand correctly, I say: "Don't worry, I understand, I understand everything now”. I believe that at the beginning the most difficult thing is the language, not so much the words, but the pronunciation. When you begin to understand the Irish accent you learn to follow the speed of the words of the native language, is no longer so difficult to be a Dubliner!

"All Great things are simple, and many can be expressed in single words: Freedom, Justice, Honour, Duty, Mercy, Hope"

Barbara Perna, 21, University Kore of Sicily (Italy)

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