A Lesson To Be Learned

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January 11th 2015
Published: January 11th 2015
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On Friday morning, the international students were given a bike tour of the lovely city we get to call home for the next 5 months. The weather for the tour was miserable. It was rainy, windy and cold and riding a bike seems to magnify all of it. As we went along the tour guide told us stories and history about the various different things we were seeing and also tried to give us a since of direction in the city. At one point, the guide told us how he used to own a family business, a news shop that had been in his family for over sixty years. The shop had to close when the recession hit though. He also told us how on the weekends, he is a doorman at a local hotel. This struck me. As a man who lost his family business and was now trying to work two jobs to make a living, he was very upbeat. The weather for the tour was bad, but he was delighted to be able to show us his city even for a discounted rate. He did not complain about the effects of the recession, rather just adjusted and tried to keep life moving. His biggest worry, he told us, was that many international students rent bikes from the university and do not wear proper safety equipment. It seems like that is pretty miniscule when you look at his life, but that seems to be the Irish way of doing things. Everyone I have met has been so helpful, friendly and welcoming to their country and city that one would think all is well, but that is not necessarily true. Waterford was struck extremely hard by the recession and is still struggling, but nevertheless they still keep their Irish Spirit.


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