Culinary Crossroads: Exploring Irish and Dutch Cuisine

Introduction When exploring Ireland as an exchange student, trying out Irish food might not be the first thing on your radar. Irish cuisine is often dismissed as simplistic and dull, much like the cooking in my native Netherlands. After all, don’t Irish and Dutch people eat nothing but bland potato dishes? Having put it to the test, I can assure you there is more to these cuisines than you might expect ...

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The richness of the Irish language, illustrations by Catherine Geaney

Mothú sa bhaile in Éirinn: how language gives a sense of belonging

Introduction Illustrations by Catherine Geaney When I told my Dutch family I was learning the Irish language, they were confused: ‘Do you mean you’re learning to speak English with an Irish accent?’ More than once, I’ve had to explain that Ireland has its own language. Irish – or Gaeilge – is one of the oldest and most historically written languages in the world. It has been spoken in Ireland for over 2.500 ...

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MU blogger Elisabeth Koopal

How holidays bring us together

From Halloween to Sinterklaas: how holidays bring us together Introduction During my exchange in Maynooth, I celebrated the Irish festival of Halloween, as well as Sinterklaas; a traditional Dutch holiday. Partaking in various celebrations, I saw how holidays bring people together, both within and across cultures. In my inaugural blog post, I’m going to tell you more about these holidays and my experience celebrating them in Ireland. Halloween: an ancient Irish holiday Halloween – ...

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“Fitting in” at Maynooth

Culture hides more than it reveals, and strangely enough what it hides, it hides most effectively from its own participants. Edward T. Hall How to fit in Maynooth: Cultural and Social Shocks Embracing diverse cultures and exploring social differences can be an eye-opening experience, especially when comparing two unique destinations like Ireland and Mozambique. In this blog post, we will delve into some of the intriguing cultural and social differences that I ...

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A Guide through Maynooth

Coming to a new city can be challenging, as you don’t know where to get the best coffee, where you can go for a walk or a run, or where to meet your new friends. But before you know it, you will have new favourite places and here are mine. https://youtube.com/shorts/ts4Y_vUV_gc?feature=share 1. The UniversityI’m not getting paid to say this, but I really like the University! As I am an intern in ...

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From Classroom to Community: How Clubs and Community Enriched My Educational Journey

After working for many years, I never thought I would find myself physically back in a classroom. I have always enjoyed learning and researching online for continuous development and growth. The thought of becoming a committed student again in a school and discovering that it might be too late was a bit scary. However, my insatiable curiosity pushed me to make one of the best decisions of my life, and ...

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GAA Croke Park

One thing I didn’t know about Ireland before I got here, was that the Irish have different national sports that you won’t find anywhere else.  While soccer is the most popular sport in Ireland and a lot of Irish follow the Premier League, Gaelic football and hurling are ranked on the second and third place among the most popular sports here.   I was lucky enough to go on a tour ...

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My Journey at Maynooth University: A Symphony of Personal and Academic Growth

As a Ph.D. student trying to find my way through the vast sea of education, I found a safe harbour on the shores of Maynooth University. From the first day I came here, I felt like I was at home. It had a unique mix of intellectual freedom and a reassuring sense of safety. It was a place that both encouraged and celebrated my individuality.Starting a Ph.D. is like going ...

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Culture shocks I had when moving to Ireland

Moving to a different country will confront you with a lot of new things: a new language, new cities and a lot of culture shocks you won’t be prepared for!Here are the biggest culture shocks I had when I first moved from Germany to Maynooth, Ireland. The Weather Still in Germany, everybody predicted that there would be a lot of rain and mostly bad weather in Ireland and when I arrived in ...

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