Our last week in Ireland began with a hike. We went from a chocolatier to hike this:
Sunny, perfect weather, 2 1/2 hours hike! It was the highlight of the trip for me. We came back from the hike and had freshly made cakes and coffee :D
An edit of the side project, I worked on in Ireland is posted here: http://www.jasmineraynaclark.com/index.php/ireland/
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday we had a mix of things to do. We had a final graduate critique that included the Burren College’s MFA students, studio visit from everyone (undergrads including some from Chicago, staff, and faculty), seminar from Conor, clean up, and our last night!
Thursday, we headed to Dublin. We stayed in the Four Court Hostel. I really enjoyed the city. We went to the Irish Museum of Art, looked at some art (that was open). It was great to see and learn about work not made by American artists. It was a nice change from the countryside and a good transition from that to going back to Chicago. Our final dinner we ate together at a Japanese restaurant. I had fun at night. Brazen Head! We also saw the Guiness factor. The city centre was really walkable.
Saturday, I spent seven hours in the airport. Oof. I was asked if I wanted to change to a direct flight, and thankfully I was given compensation in the form of a flight and food voucher! So my flight changed from 9am to 1pm. Either way, I arrived in Chicago at the same time and I didn’t have to change flights!
My first week back to school was a struggle. I got a cold or some sort sickness that I was almost over a week later, which would have been okay, but that Wednesday I was scheduled for re-candidacy.
I was not jet lagged since I did not fully adjust. Thankfully, I prepared enough in Ireland for the process, so I really just needed to print, set up my room, and fine tune my spiel. There were three others that had to re-present and they went the Friday before. I revised a project I started my first semester.
So I was by myself. I ended up passing this time. I have changed some things in my work, and I am happy I never have to go through that process ever ever ever ever again.
Wednesday night and Thursday, I was finally able to relax. I had the presentation hanging over my head for about two months and then got sick. I was finally able to reflect on the Ireland trip and fall semester. I am really happy I went to Ireland. It was nice to go somewhere and focus on one thing for an extended period of time, without distraction. Also, not having consistent wi-fi helped limit distractions.