By UL International Student Ambassador Valérie Grignon,
It’s not a part of those Irish stereotypes by accident; the Irish weather really is one of its own kind. Chances are that, like me, you come from a country where the weather is somewhat predictable and might be a bit more enjoyable. Of course, getting all four season’s weather in one day can be impressive, but here is how to survive it until you get used to it.
- Prepare mentally. Tell yourself that it’s going to be terrible, that you won’t see the sun shining during whole weeks and the wind is going to blow the rooftop of your apartment. When you expect the worst, you can’t be disappointed! Then, you’ll be delighted to see that it’s sometimes far from being the truth.
- Go outside even if the weather ends up being not too enjoyable. If you made plans to visit somewhere or someone for the next day but you wake up and it’s not so nice outside, you should absolutely go anyway. Chances are you’ll miss on a lot if you keep postponing your plans because of the weather. Embrace the change!
- Buy a warm raincoat. That one seems obvious, but I’ve seen quite a few international students trying to keep up without it; they’ve all regretted it at one point.
- Wear layers. Of course, multiple layers of clothing keep you warmer, but there’s also the fact that it’s warmer during the day than at night, so you just need to take a layer off and then add it again. Also, if the first layer gets rained on, the second one stays dry.
- Buy waterproof shoes or boots. In the late Autumn/Winter, the ground is never dry. Never. If you plan on walking for a while, those are not optional.
- Go out as soon as the sun shines. Now that it’s pretty much winter here, the sun isn’t out really often. If you tend to get grumpy when you lack vitamin D, I’d suggest that you go out and enjoy the sun as much as you can, even if it’s just to sit on your balcony for 5 minutes.
- Buy a good umbrella. And ‘good’ is not really an option if you don’t want to buy a new one every time yours flips over because of a sudden wind gust.
- Eat comfort food. After 4 or 5 days of consecutive rain, comfort food or traditional meals from back home are great for the mood. Even better; cook them with friends!
- Have a stack of tea. Or coffee if you’d rather. There are a few nice places to buy quality teas and coffees around campus.
- Be ready in case you’d get a cold (or better, take a multivitamin each day to avoid catching one). When you already have fever might be the worst time to get up and go buy chicken soup and medication.
This blog was written in Autumn/Winter 2015