August 14th, 2013 | Uncategorized
Welcome to my Blog! I just wanted to start by saying that for the few days I have been here, Northern Ireland has been a complete culture shock. I will confess that I came to this country knowing little to nothing about the heritage. I guess the only positive out of that is that I came to this country with a clean slate, with no biases or assumptions towards the situations going on here. The first initial shock that I had was when we visited the Peace Wall in Belfast, Northern Ireland, which divides the Protestant side from the Catholic side. It was just mind goggling to know that there are literally two sides in Northern Ireland that do not get along and there is an actual wall placed in between the communities to attempt to keep them segregated and therefore, at peace. I am grateful to finally get the chance to experience, witness, and live in another culture other than the bubble that I feel that I lived in America.
On a much much lighter note, Ireland is beautiful. From the stone buildings and castles to the abundance of green grass, Ireland has a sort of untouched feeling, unlike the modern skyscrapers and overwhelming amount of concrete that I am used to in New York. There is a constant overcast of clouds here, but luckily we have experienced a sunnier Ireland rather than the rain it is famous for.
It is amazing how quickly the 11 of us Victory Scholars have become a family. Even though I am the only “football” player here and most of the training and programs are basketball based, I hardly feel left out or out of place here. It’s a great time watching the basketball players attempt to kick around a soccer ball, while I don’t even need to see myself to know that I look like a fish out of the water while I try to dribble and shoot a basketball. Hopefully by the end of this year I will learn how to take a proper free throw, or maybe not… To all my family and friends, big hugs from across the pond!