5 things you probably didn’t know about Ireland

"You'll never beat the Irish!"

Sure there’s the myth about the Leprechauns, and yes, everyone does indeed drink Guinness. But here’s a few things you probably didn’t know about Ireland that I had the opportunity to learn on my recent trip there:

1. They’re serious about their queues: I was fortunate enough to go see “Mumford & Sons” in Galway. I was not fortunate enough to relieve myself before the show. You see, Europeans are serious about their queues. A queu is a line. When you stand in a line it is your duty to abide by the rules of that line. Mainly, stay in that line and don’t diverge into another line. I had the misfortune of standing in a line for at least forty-five minutes to go to the porter potties, and somehow I had diverged into the line beside me. And you would not believe how many people turned to face me, uttering insults under their breath and belting out “MIND THE QUEU”. I sincerely learned my lesson.

2. There are four seasons in a day: Ireland is rainy. But the weather will taunt you, tease you, all day long. Sometimes the sun will come out for a brief minute, and everyone will shed their clothes as if it were Brazil! But then the rain comes back again. Thank god for a rain coat and a good umbrella. You’ll need it.

3. Sheep: Go for a drive in the country, look to your left and look to your right. Sheep, everywhere. I guess the people here must get a lot of z’s because there’s more than plenty to count. And watch where you drive, a little lamb could be crossing the road!

4. Shorts with tights (pretending it’s hot when it’s not): Perhaps you were wondering, as I was, what’s trending in Ireland. When I got to Dublin I noticed that, like girls in Kentucky, short shorts are a summer staple. Except in this cold and rainy place tights are a must. I saw many leggy lassies clad in neon, patterns, prints, etc. Sometimes they would double-layer with a fishnet pair on top. With spiky platforms and ballerina buns, these girls made the pub look like a runway.

5. What’s the “craic”?: Pronounced “crack”, this is a phrase you hear a lot in Ireland. “What’s the craic?” or “Where’s the craic” means “What’s cool?” or “Where is the fun at?”. But imagine my confusion at first hearing this. I made sure to tell my new Irish friends that if they ever came to visit me in Kentucky, to avoid saying “Where’s the craic?” unless they wanted to hang out with the guards (police).