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Introduction

Hi friend! Welcome to keeping up with Sass!

Before you ask, let me explain this site title. 1- No not sass as in the attitude (although there probably will be a bit of that on here too) but Sass with a capital S, as in the nickname I was given as a kid. 2- I did not have a clue what to call this blog… This was the best I could come up with.

DISCLAIMER: If you’re thinking that this is an extremely structured and grammatically correct blog, just leave now.¬†This blog will be filled with comma splices, punctuation mistakes, and a butt load of sarcasm. If you’re cool with that, then please stay and continue reading ūüôā

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For the souls of those who passed.

If you’ve been keeping up with the blog, you would know that I recently went to Berlin. When I was there, I took a trip out to a nearby concentration camp. It was one of the most heartbreaking things I’ve ever done and it impacted me profoundly. I couldn’t help but make¬†parallels between what I was seeing there and what I have always been told about the Armenian Genocide. We are well into April now, which means it’s time for the annual Genocide commemoration. Normally, if I was back home in Montreal, I’d have at least a¬†commemoration event¬†to go to every week, if not more. I’m not gonna lie,¬†I often ignored all those events and chose to only go to the march in Ottawa. Now, being in Dublin, where the Armenian population is of less than 200 people, I am left with a longing to be back home and join my friends and family at all those events that I neglected for so many years… Who knew that it would take being away to realize how important it is to participate.

This blog post is my way of taking part in the 102nd commemoration of the Armenian Genocide.

When I left the Sachsenhausen concentration camp and was sitting on the train back to Berlin, I took my phone out and wrote about some of the things I was feeling… Forty minutes later, we were back in Berlin and I had basically written an entire blog post about what it felt like to be at a former concentration camp, about what it felt like to be in Germany, about what it feels like to have so much of my own history denied and about why we are not done fighting for justice and recognition.

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Berlin, Germany

Before coming to Dublin, I made a list of all the places that I potentially wanted to visit. With more than half of my exchange done, I know that the list was nothing short of extremely optimistic and unrealistic. I’ll be lucky if I end up visiting half the cities on¬†it. The city of Berlin was a last minute addition. I was looking at the destinations that Ryanair flies to from Dublin when I stumbled upon it. I figured it would be cool to visit Germany and I’d heard nothing but great things about Berlin. So when I was looking for a place to go during my second week of break and when a friend told me she was doing Berlin, I decided to join her trip.

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St. Patrick’s Day: Expectation vs Reality

“Spend Saint Patrick’s Day in Ireland”

It’s a common entry on a lot of bucket lists, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I still can’t believe I get to cross it off my list.

The excitement for this day started way before March 17th came around. One of my first thoughts when I got¬†my exchange offer for Dublin was that I would be here for Saint Patrick’s Day. I’ve been excited for the experience ever since.¬†However, people would not stop telling me that the reality of Saint Patrick’s Day in Dublin is not as great as everyone makes it out to¬†be. So what’s the use of a blog¬†if not to set records¬†straight?

Here is my Saint Patty’s experience: expectation vs reality, PG version.

Before you ask: yes, there was a lot of beer involved, but NO I DID NOT HAVE ANY¬†(my parents read this… hence the PG version)

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London, England

In case you’re not aware… I’m currently on a two week long March break. Don’t ask me why because I don’t know, but it’s definitely not because of all the work I’ve been doing. But let’s be honest… when you get two weeks off of school, you take it and you don’t complain.

I decided to make three trips during these two weeks. Most of my first week was spent in London, then I had to come back to Dublin for a very low key¬†day¬†(also known as St Patrick’s day), then I’ll be headed to two other countries for the second week. No, I will not tell you where those countries are yet. You have to wait and read about it later.

Enough babbling, let’s talk about London!

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A Perfect Day

I know what you’re thinking… There’s no such thing as a perfect day, right?

WRONG! Yes there is! And I experienced it in all its glory this past Saturday on a day trip to Northern Ireland.

This trip was a very last minute decision. It was only late on Friday night, that I decided I was gonna join two of my friends on a day trip to Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland. Due to the fact that it was so last minute, I didn’t even bother to check the weather for the time I would be there…. I checked and was devastated to see weather warnings for Belfast (city in Northern Ireland). It was gonna be a very rainy, very windy and probably kind of miserable day.

Barcelona, Spain

If you’re reading this, it means I have made it back alive from my first trip since being here!!!! (Yey me!) I decided to start the adventures off strong and head to Barcelona for the weekend (still can’t believe I can say¬†this). Also, YEY for picture posts!

Something I realized during¬†my three days¬†in Spain: two years of Spanish did me absolutely no good! I didn’t understand a word anyone spoke to me and all I could manage to remember to say was¬†“gracias”.

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A Love Letter

It’s Valentine’s Day! Normally, I couldn’t care less, but today is special… It was exactly a month ago that I left home in Montreal to embark on this amazing journey. For the past week, I have been trying to find a creative, interesting and entertaining way to write something honouring both events today… My genius idea: A love letter to Mr. Student exchange. In this post, I attempt to explain why I love Mr. Student exchange and why I chose to meet him in the first place:

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First impressions

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Update: Ireland is mostly but not just fun and games. I had my first week of classes this week! If you read the previous post, you would know that I’ve been really excited to finally start school and establish some kind of an organized routine. Here are some of my first impressions about my first week of classes and about other fun but not so important things.

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Now what?

I’M BACK!!! And I’m in Ireland…. K now what?

So as you may or may not have noticed, there was no blog post last week, but hopefully, scholarship people aren’t devils and this¬†won’t matter much. If you’re reading this as soon as it’s posted, I’ve already been in Dublin for a little over a week and classes just started today. This means that I’ve been in Dublin for an entire week with no¬†strict schedule… You would think that I would love this freedom, that I would enjoy my first week in a new city completely free to do whatever I want,¬†without having¬†any actual responsibilities to help ground me. Contrary to popular belief, I think this sudden freedom has made it harder to adjust to being here.

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Apparently, Worry is Inevitable

“Aren’t you scared?”

“Do you know anyone going with you?”

“You’re gonna be all by yourself?”

“You haven’t seen the school?”

“But, aren’t you scared?”

These are just a few of the questions I get when I first tell people that I am going to study in Ireland for a semester. These are valid questions, ¬†but initially, I couldn’t understand why ¬†negativity and fear were the first emotions that people experienced when they found¬†out about my plans. Why couldn’t people be excited first and worried second?

I know I was.
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