Making friends with the locals was much harder than I had imagined. Since the house is full of just the international students, there isn’t too much cultural diversity within our group. So we made Irish friends through class, going out to pubs, etc. Once an Irish friend is made, they typically introduce you to their other friends at parties or other get togethers. The main point I expressed to my Irish friends is that I wanted to have a true Irish experience. They really appreciated this. My friends not only explain things to me from a cultural perspective, but they also introduce me to new experiences. Although making Irish friends was difficult in the beginning, the Irish are extremely kind people. Once they found out that we are a group of Americans, conversation typically starts.
The currency thing is getting much easier. However, I find myself with a lot of change being stored in my dresser. I have a rule that I save my 1 euro coins for laundry, 10, 20 and 50 cents for post, and the 1, 2, and 5 cents for tips. I never really had a budget when coming over to Ireland. Instead, I buy cheap groceries and inexpensive drinks at the pubs. One thing to understand is that this is a college town. We’re all poor college students. So no one is going out of their way to buy the fancy drinks or get take out every night.