“Culture” is a complex thing! Dublin has a very multi-national population and at some point many of the people from other countries will go to their home country and will bring a piece if Irish culture with them or might even be seen as experts on Irish culture. But have they really lived in Ireland?

This is not an Ireland-specific problem, but the Brazilian community in Dublin spends most of the time with other Brazilians, the Polish community sticks together, the Chinese community does the same and I could go on. By not living with Irish people, however, this means that the international community will never really get in contact with Irish culture.

They don’t know what the Late Late Toy Show means in Ireland. Or the Rose of Tralee. They don’t have experienced Christmas Day in an Irish family. They have never heard of Horlicks and when they hear “Irish stew”, they think it should contain Guinness or other new fandangled things.

Now you sure could say that nobody needs to know about about the Rose of Tralee or Horlicks or the Child of Prague because even among the Irish younger population these things lose relevance. But it still means that there are parallel universes in the same country where all people involved THINK they know what Irish culture is, but they don’t!

At Christmas, Brussels sprouts are obligatory here! Gammon/Ham and Turkey BOTH are needed to have a proper Irish Christmas Dinner. But does a Brazilian or Polish or Chinese or German who lives here but has never lived in and with an Irish family know these things?

Maybe there should be “culture classes”? ;-) To make sure that at least the stories are told, even if they other nationals won’t get a chance to live it?!

Or maybe it should be obligatory for every foreigner in Ireland to have an Irish boyfriend/girlfriend for a minimum period of 12 month. :-P