Greetings again from Dublin! It’s been quite a while since I have posted an update, but I’ve only been here a week so far, and I’ve been getting over what feels like a minor version of the flu. Thankfully my friends here are amazing and I didn’t really have to leave my bed all weekend. My Irish friends are currently at maths and celebrating the fact that I voluntarily stayed home this morning, as they’ve been trying to get to me skip at least one lecture this year.
I landed in Dublin early Saturday morning and took a taxi back to Halls. Being exhausted and away from Ireland for about a month, a North Dublin taxi driver’s accent was not the easiest thing to understand that morning, but it got me prepared to be back in potato land. The driver was super chatty and friendly, and we talked about everything from the weather, to the French, to alcohol and drugs, to the top tech companies in the world, and a bunch of other really random things. I got back to Halls and unpacked, then one of my friends came over to help keep me awake for the rest of the day.
Classes have been going well so far; some of the classes are the same, like written/oral French, maths, and programming, and other classes are new, such as syntax and phonetics and phonology. Nevertheless all modules have new teachers. Phonetics and phonology is a fun module, and it’s small since it is only for CSL students (13 of us). However, it can be a bit awkward and embarrassing at times, since the class is based on speech sounds and oral exercises, and I have a different accent from my Irish classmates. The teacher will have us repeat words after her, or talk about tongue placement when saying certain things, and my tongue doesn’t behave like everyone else’s. 🙂
For everyone in CSL (all years) we have DCLRS (Dublin computational linguistic research seminar) on Fridays every now and then, where different researchers in the computational linguistics field come talk about what they do. This past Friday we had visiting lecturers from Spain and Germany come talk about forensic linguistics. They explained how what people say can be analysed and used in cases, or how to identify things such as hate speech or harassment. It was really interesting, and of course, me being me, I loved when they brought out examples from cases in Spain, since I could read and understand them.
Other than going to class, getting over jetlag, and hanging out with friends, not much has been going on. My friends here at Halls and I take turns cooking for each other or making combined dinners, which is nice since I alway seem to be out of food. I got a mini projector for Christmas, so we love to have movie nights and project movies on the apartment wall.
Next week I should have more updates; my friends and I are constantly coming up with plans and things to do, now we just have to actually do them. One of my friends has recently become obsessed with octopuses, so we might go to the aquarium over by the docks. Until later, hope everyone is having a great start to the new year!