Celebrating the 4th of July in Dublin
The experience of celebrating the fourth abroad
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As my alarm goes off I rub my eyes and reach for my phone on my bedside table. The bright screen on my phone illuminates my face and the first thing I see is ‘Tuesday, July 4th’ displayed on the screen. I then immediately turn off my alarm and continue with my morning routine by doing a quick run through of posts on my social media in order to help wake me up. I open Instagram first and sure enough the endless videos and pictures of fireworks going off flood my timeline. Interspersed with the firework posts are also many photos and videos of friends and family holding the American flag while decked out in red, white and blue already celebrating the 4th of July on July 3rd.
The 4th of July is by far one of the most fun holidays to celebrate in the States. It’s full of grilling out hotdogs and hamburgers, warm weather, parades, fireworks, sparklers, celebrating our independence, endless laughter from family and friends and so much more. It’s also a time where people take time off from work surrounding the holiday and head somewhere fun like the beach or lake with friends and family to celebrate. But most importantly it’s a time where we gather together and take time to appreciate all that our country is and all that our country has done for us. This year however is a little different for me in the sense that I am celebrating the 4th of July halfway across the world in Dublin.
Even though it is a rather odd feeling to not be home celebrating alongside my friends and family, I am incredibly happy to be here in Dublin. Getting the opportunity to celebrate outside of the country not only makes the holiday all the more special, but it gives me the chance to celebrate while still experiencing another new and exciting culture. It also gives me the chance to not only celebrate alongside new American friends that I have made through my program, but also with new Irish friends as well. In a sense celebrating the 4th of July here in Dublin, helps bring together two different cultures and gives me the opportunity to reflect on not only how great the United States is but also how great Ireland is. Being abroad for the Fourth is a great and unique experience in it’s own. And although my friends will be celebrating the traditional way with cookouts and fireworks, I'm happy that I get the chance to be celebrating a new way with new friends and new experiences.