My favorite picture of the Irish countryside

04 November 2010


I had my first day volunteering at Oxfambooks today! For those of you who don't know, Oxfam is non-profit organization based in Oxford, England. It started during World War II as the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief and was geared towards civilians in Greece to help them receive food and medicine. Today, Oxfam works mostly in Africa, working to bring Economic Justice, Essential services (e.g. healthcare and education), basic rights, and gender justice to people in need. They believe that all human beings have the right to: a home, enough to eat and clean water, a way to make a living, education and health care, freedom from violence, and a voice and an identity. There are several versions of Oxfam shops. All of them take donations of gently used goods to resell. The profit then goes towards the organization.
This morning was a really good experience! The bookshop is located on the outskirts of Temple Bar, down the street from Dublin Castle. I didn't do too much today in regards to customers (I'll get trained on the till next week) so I mainly organized books and made sure everything was picked up and looked nice. It was very interesting to see how the shop is run - it is completely dependent on volunteers to function (as are all Oxfam shops). If there's a shop near you, I would highly recommend you looking into their volunteer opportunities! I work in the shop once a week for 4 hours - just goes to show you don't have to have a ton of extra time to make a difference!

"But the greatest love - the love above all loves, even greater than that of a mother - is the tender, passionate, undying love...of one beer drunken slob for another."

02 November 2010


I have decided that Ireland is the best place to be during Halloween. I swear, everyone gets dressed up - and apparently, they all go to McGowan's, too! On Saturday night, I went with my friend Jordan (from Texas) to her friend's house (also from Texas - I've noticed the Americans tend to band together) to meet up with Angela, her boyfriend Niall, and a visiting friend, again, from Texas (I think her name was Jacqueline?) When we got to McGowan's, we thought it was a hopeless cause as it was already past midnight and the line was insanely long. Insert another VIP moment :) Niall knows someone who works at the pub so we got let in first! Woot! But, as I stated before, everybody was there so breathing room was a little on the tight side. We had an awesome time - all in all, a very good Halloween!

"Now, just like alcoholism and Catholic guilt, the Irish brought [Halloween] traditions to America with them around 1846 due to the big famine we still bring up when we want to shout at the British." Full article: