“The first time I came to Ireland was 10 years ago and I was on holiday for a month. This was part of the reason that I chose to come to Ireland, I was familiar with the place and I liked the country.
In the beginning being in a new environment was hard, but I was fortunate to havea lot of Irish people in my class, which helped me practice the language and integrate quite quickly.
In my first month my class went on a four day trip to Galway, in the west of Ireland. That was the first time I met and got to know people outside the classroom. The majority of them would have been Dublin based and had their own groups and friends (so it was good to start to get to know people on a personal level and not just as classmates).
In the beginning, the only thing that stood in my way was the language and the lingo, the slang I suppose. The accent wasn’t that bad, I didn’t have an issue with that.
When I moved here, I felt Greek but very integrated. Though, I realized I loved my country when it was the first year that Greece was in a recession and the economy had gone bad. Sometimes people made silly jokes about it… I know they were silly jokes but it actually bothered me.
I never thought of myself as a migrant, or an emigrant or and immigrant. I always thought of myself as a young professional who had a dream to move abroad to pursue his career and experience the world. This is what I’m doing."