Tag Archives: Moving

A walk through the hood

SAM_0729

Okay let’s settle this first. I saw the dress in white and gold for a whole morning, until I don’t know what happened but suddenly I could only see it in blue and black. What even is life?

For today’s blog post I thought it might be cool to show you around this neighbourhood of mine. I moved here last December and can now call myself a proud Coolminion. Coolmine is located somewhere between Clonsilla and Blanchardstown in Dublin 15. It doesn’t have that many interesting features, but it is supposedly kinda close-ish to a castle. Only a 30 minute walk from where I live, and if I wanted to take a bus out there it would take me around 40 minutes to get there. Dublin buses are special. Since the weather has been quite fierce for the last few weeks, I’ll save the castle for a non-rainy day and will report back to you guys later.

I discovered the #1 Takeaway Restaurant just after Lent had started. Bollocks. I hadn’t given up on some food in particular, but I did promise myself to not get any takeaways. Only a month and a bit to go, no biggie. Welcome to the hood, bro. SAM_0699 SAM_0714 SAM_0742 SAM_0707 SAM_0732 SAM_0698 SAM_0718 SAM_0739 SAM_0748

10 Ways in which Dublin has changed me

Aston Quay, Dublin

Aston Quay, Dublin

Having moved to Dublin from the Netherlands a bit over a year ago, people sometimes ask me if I have changed anything or much since. In general, I don’t think I’ve changed all that much (although I’m also not a 100% sure if I’d be the best judge of that). But there are some things I do differently now, and here’s a list of them.

1. I kiss people less often.
Okay I should probably explain that right? In the Netherlands it’s custom to kiss each other three times on the cheek (left, right, left) if you haven’t seen the other person in a while, if it’s someone’s birthday, if you’re happy to see someone, or just because you feel like it. In Ireland, I still haven’t really discovered THE way of greeting someone. I think it’s two kisses, but not always and since I was so used to three, I’ve had quite a few awkward encounters in which I was suddenly kissing the air or bumpin’ heads.
Instead, I now opt for a high-five or just spread my arms like wings ready for take-off, so people know hugs-a-comin.

2. Money talk.
Dutchies tend to be a lot more secretive about money stuff. Here, straight up questions like “What did that cost?” are a lot more common and I’ve become more open discussing money stuff too. “12 euro on sale, New Look.”

3. My parsnip intake has increased by a 100%.
It’s just not a hip and happening vegetable in the Netherlands. Good story.

4. I walk a lot, lot more.
Even when I had a bike here, I opted for walking most of the time as not all the roads are bike proof. Also, the public transport is complicated and terrible.
Walking is the way to go.

5. A sea of tea.
I drink more tea with more milk, and leave the teabag in my cup so it gets nice and strong. This has nothing to do with someone telling me that “taking your teabag out is for wimps”, btw.
Also, I bulk buy tea now. In the Netherlands there’s usually a lousy 20 teabags in a packet, over here the small packets contain 80, and regular packets of tea 160.
Favourite tea? Barry’s. Runner up? Tetley’s.

6. Face paint.
I’ve started using a lot more make-up. Women tend to wear more make-up here, especially in or for their jobs, and I started to feel shabby and bare without any, as if I had put less effort in.
Also, eyebrows are life.

7. I play the lotto now.
Had never played it until moving here. The Irish are partial to a gamble and there’s countless betting shops about. Paddy Power, Ladbrokes, Boyle Sports. I’m not even sure if those type of shops are a thing in the Netherlands.
Since in Dublin prices-for-everything are rocketing through the roof (just an example: 6,50 euro for a pint, no problem), I might as well join in on the hunt for a pot of gold. Also, there’s a bit more of a buzz around the lotto here. Especially when it’s announced there’s been a big local win, there’s quite some speculation going on.

8. I eat more pureed soup.
In the Netherlands soup is usually almost see-through with big chunks of vegetable. I enjoyed the Irish pureed soup a lot more, until that time someone said they thought it resembled baby food. Oh.

9. Jaysus.
A few classic local expressions are now incorporated in my day to day vocabulary. The favourite among the dance mums in the class, “Ahh jaysus”, was first to escape my mouth. “Ahh lads gowan…” and “that’s gas” followed soon after.

10. “This will make for a good story.”
The Irish attitude towards bad luck and unexpected events made me more relaxed about certain situations. I’ve seen two of my teachers chuckle over a lost house key: “Oh dear, what are we to do now?” A group of dancers had their car break down on their way to the World Championships and all the while laughing they told me the adventures they went through to get there in the end. “It wouldn’t be a proper journey without at least one car breaking down, right?”
Been on a pub crawl with a group of friends and lost several items (a phone, a coat, money, glasses)? No problem, we’ll just do the whole pub crawl again tonight and get our belongings back.
Things that would upset or annoy a lot of people, the Irish don’t seem to be bothered about too quickly.
Why worry about things you can’t control? They are adventures and they’ll make for a good story.

Rosita does not move but I just did

rosita Hello y’all! It’s been a wee while since the last time I was on here but life has been pretty bloody busy.

I just spent an amazing weekend watching Irish Dancing Championships in the City West Hotel – I didn’t compete myself as it was a regional championship and not from my own region, but it was pretty awesome altogether.  My age group is usually the last to get to stage in a competition so I never have enough peace to just sit, watch, enjoy and absorb everything that is going on but since my only task for the weekend was supporting fellow dancers I had enough time and calmness in me to do just that.

Yesterday morning I finally moved into my new place – a house in Coolmine (that means I’m a Coolminion now, no?). As I needed to be at the championships ASAP (and with needing I mean that strong urge to be there) my friend who has been so good to help me move and we just threw bags into the room and I got the hell out – leaving the actual settling in for later. And here I am, sat in my new place on a brown barcalounger in the living room. So far so good.

Talking to my flatmate we discovered pretty much straightaway we have very similar life stories. Meaning we both got sorted into Slytherin by Pottermore, even though we strongly felt we belonged in different houses (me in Hufflepuff, she in Ravenclaw). There’s also a shared interest in mindless reality tv and pasta, guess it’s safe to say we get on so far.

My new room is spacious and bright and I’m just thinking about where to put my stuff or if I should rearrange some of the furniture. The silly thing in this house is that there are so many light switches that I’m accidentally creating a mini disco every time I try to find the right one.
Also, ever since arriving to Ireland I have had bad luck on the Wi-Fi front.  The connection broke off pretty much every 10 minutes in the first B&B I stayed and I have just gone a year without Wi-Fi in the house, the only internet came from (expensive and limited) dongle. This time around the Wi-Fi is a dream come true, until you walk up the stairs to my floor and it’s gone. I should be able to sort it out with an extender/expander (?) so I’ll be on the hunt for that.

If anyone can remember this blog and is curious about me moving my stuff: it did fit into one car in the end, and nothing broke after all. I just seem to have lost my sun glasses but since it’s kinda winter and obviously Dublin I reckon that’s no biggie.

When does stuff become shit? A blog on minimalism and a love for stuff


It’s been years since I first saw this sketch by George Carlin and I still find it as interesting as when I saw it the first time. It makes me laugh while at the same time it’s hitting one of my weak spots: stuff. I love me some stuff.

Pretty stuff, a bargain or treasure hunting at a flea market, big epic yes to that with a cherry on top. At the same time I fully realize stuff is not that important and could even lead to drag you down. We all know that feeling of coming home to a messy house because there wasn’t enough time to tidy up a bit, and how much more pleasant it is to come home to a neat place. Somewhere where you don’t tumble over a pile of books to grab something you need. I seem to sleep much better when my room is tidy, even though my eyes are closed (no shit) during the night and I’m not in consciously looking at my room. It’s just a more peaceful feel when it’s tidy.

Sitting here I know I have pretty much everything I need in life, materialistically. Bar a Volkswagen Beetle and a treehouse, but eh. I moved to Ireland with a big suitcase, a medium backpack and some hand luggage, leaving behind quite some stuff at my parents house. Mostly sentimental stuff, because there hasn’t been any moment that I can remember consciously that I was in desperate need for something I left there. Okay at times I would love to have a Harry Potter copy with me but in the darkest of times I should remember I could just run into an Easons and sort it out. From the stuff I have at the moment (leaving necessaries like clothing and toiletries aside) there is probably only 10% I actually actively use. The rest of it just sits about, usually for the prettiness or the sentimental value. I’m a sucker for sentimental stuff. I used to be not even capable of throwing wrappers away if the treat was really yummy or if it was given to me on a special occasion or by someone important to me. Thankfully I’ve gotten a lot better. Most of the time.

Stuff requires more stuff as well as effort and time. Stuff needs upkeep, cleaning, dusting, stuff can get lost and stuff can break and need repairing. If or when stuff piles up it’ll get in your way, eventually. Stuff can cause anxiety and stress and in extreme cases, depression.

When I heard I needed to move to another place, there were a few things that immediately sprung to mind. Besides thinking of how sad it will be to leave an estate with such a great chipper, how am I going to move my stuff, what if something breaks? For example, the trophy I won in a dance competition, how do I wrap or transport it? Even though I know a trophy is not the win or the joyous occasion itself but more like a metaphor, I seem to want to cling onto it as if it is. Had they given me a beer or a blanket instead, the feel of winning would have been pretty much the same – I had a fabulous day dancing and chatting with my friends, enjoying the atmosphere, did my very best and came out on top. Why do I feel the need to connect an object to that memory, and why is it now bugging me?

Is a flea market not just a collection of stuff that is proven not to be needed? What am I looking for?

So when does stuff become shit? When is a bargain a bitch? Also, which stuff will be a plague and needs to skedaddle, and what should I keep?

Brb, gotta sort out some stuff.