Thoughts After Three Months in Ireland

Here’s the thing…

A little over three months ago I wrote a blog post announcing my new plans for the following year. Everything I said in that blog sounded optimistic and excited. We were going to find a job, settle down for a year in a new country and just spent time together.

Well, things didn’t exactly turn out that way.

Ireland is a country with problems and I was aware of that before going. What I didn’t expect was how bad the situation actually is over there. The country is in huge debt after they took on a loan from the E.U. to prevent the nation from going bankrupt. It’s still going through a recession, jobs are scarce and demand is high. People from some southern European countries, which are doing even worse, flock to Ireland or other places to find work. This does not help the situation at all.

Rainy day on O'Connell St, Dublin, Ireland.
O’Connell Street, on a depressing rainy day in Dublin.

Very long story short: in three months time we didn’t find a job, or even an apartment.

The problem with finding (short-term) apartments was that we are a couple. People apparently aren’t really keen on renting places to couples in Ireland for some crazy reason.

Every single thing ended up to be way more complicated than we had anticipated. An example: to have a job you need a bank account, to open a bank account you need a permanent address, to have a permanent address you need a job and a bank account to pay bills,… It’s an insane vicious circle and I still don’t know how to get out of it. What I remember from Australia was that to open a bank account you just needed a passport…

Caroline has worked a couple of days in a couple of places and I had exactly one job interview and I also got turned down by McDonald’s of all places, who were actually looking for new staff. There’s nothing more depressing than that, believe me.

Then there comes a point when you have to make a decision; after all, you can’t stay in a place forever and keep on trying and trying if the job market sucks.

So here we both are. Back in our own specific countries, separated once again (it’s the eight time we’ve had to say goodbye) and it’s getting incredibly frustrating. It’s so hard to build a life together when you’re from different countries and with an ocean in between. But there always is another way and I’m sure that it will work out eventually.

While we were in Ireland we spent a lot of our time – about half – in Dublin, a city that neither of us actually liked, but in which we thought we would have the best chances of finding work. The rest of the time was spent traveling around, staying in the bigger cities in search of work and seeing some of the beautiful countryside on the way.

Ireland is without question a fantastic place to travel in, there’s great history, gorgeous coastlines and cozy pubs – expect a few picture posts later on – but for us it has been a massive, massive disappointment.

However, unlike some of the people of Ireland who continue to lose their jobs and houses, we are still lucky enough to have a home to go back to. Just not together unfortunately… For now.

Caroline wrote a great post about her Ireland experience. Make sure to take a look!


Lonely Planet

Published by Bram Reusen
Bram Reusen is a Belgian travel photographer, writer and the founder of Travel. Experience. Live. He now lives in Charlottesville, Virginia, USA. From backpacking and adventuring to slow travel and cycling trips, Bram focuses on nature and adventure travel. His passions are hiking in national parks and sampling craft beers.

8 thoughts on “Thoughts After Three Months in Ireland

  • Been there, done that (the long distance thing). No desire to do it again 🙂

    You already know my take on things via the lengthy email. That’s one of the benefits to working online, and you had mentioned on your FB that you are dedicated to getting at least 50% of your income coming in from online sources. Take it to 100% and really kick it in the butt 🙂

    I’ve been 100% online since January of 2008, but ironically enough I’m actually evolving a little bit back into the physical side of things here in late 2013, with classes/consultations/etc. going on at the local level here in Playa del Carmen and Cancun based upon my success online.

    Bottom line/moral of this story is….you’ll find a way. When I left the U.S. in 2007 I was belly-up; 6k to my name, zero job prospects on the horizon, no experience in anything other than construction for 15+ years, no college education, I never finished high school, and I only spoke English. All that matters is your dedication to make it happen, and you have that in bucketloads.

    • While a long distance relationship does work, it doesn’t work forever. We both know that and we’re doing everything we can and are looking at every option we have to make sure that next time we see each other, we won’t have to say goodbye again.

      You’ve been really supporting of this blog and of what I do and I can’t thank you enough for that or for the email; I will get back to you before the end of the day.

  • Keep your head up guys, things will go your way soon

  • <3 Sometimes everything seems against us…but then it's more motivation to overcome everything and prove that it is meant to be!

  • But, when it does work out, this will all just be a memory that makes you laugh. Not now, because it just seems frustrating, but eventually.

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