What I Love About Belfast

The new Belfast city logo. Image from http://thelogocompany.net.

To celebrate Valentine’s Day, I’m making a list of a few things I love about Belfast so far.

  • Student discounts.  These can be found everywhere, from theatres to pharmacies.  Even if a student discount isn’t advertised, it’s usually worth asking.
  • On a similar note, cinema tickets are only £3 on Tuesday nights.  My hallmates and I are going to the movies tonight, though we haven’t yet decided if we’ll see The Vow for some sappy Valentine’s fun or The Woman in Black in a slightly anti-Valentine’s spirit.
  •  Everyone spells my name correctly at the first guess.
    None of these Katelynne shenanigans.

    This is not my Starbucks cup, but one I found on another Caitlin's blog at http://caitlinsweeny.com/?p=111. She was just as shocked and happy to have a barista spell her name correctly.

  • The frequent inclusion of the word “wee” in conversation.  The phone salesclerk said, “That’s your wee mobile number on the receipt.”  Another store employee promised, “I’ll be with you in two wee seconds.”  A boy in my Creative Writing class mentioned that, “A character doesn’t have to be a person.  It can be a wee animal.”  “Wee” is multi-purpose and endlessly adorable.
  • The cars are so wee!

Student cars at Elms Village, the Queen's residential village in which I live.

  • When you go into a nice restaurant with your eighteen-twenty-two-year-old friends, as I did Saturday night, the waitress asks, “Would you like some time to look over the wine list before I take your drink order?”  Of course, this could happen in many European cities, not just Belfast.  Being twenty in America, I’m used to being regarded with pity (“Aww, you can’t drink, you poor thing”) or suspicion (“Don’t you dare try to drink alcohol”), so it’s nice to just be trusted.
  • Incessant clouds, wind and rain mean that sunny days (like today!) demand to enjoyed.  Plus, “It’s so green!” a comment I have now heard from so many American students, it’s getting to be hilarious.  But it’s true.

My first view of the emerald fields (obviously through the plane window).

  • Sales tax is included.  My £1 frying fan from Poundworld was £1, not £1.07.  Like student discounts, this is especially appreciated considering that I’m paying roughly $1.60 for every £1.
  • The people are unfailingly kind.  I have yet to be snubbed or condescended to, I feel comfortable asking virtually any stranger for explanations or directions, and if I experience rudeness at this point, I will probably consider it an outlier.
  • For just £10, you can get a round-trip train ticket to Dublin, where I’ll be spending the day this Friday!

There’s a lot to love about Belfast!

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7 thoughts on “What I Love About Belfast

  1. Poundland and Poundworld are the best, especially for candy. I think I got ten packets of gum for a pound there once…

  2. annaisabe says:

    I love the way Scots talk. Except sometimes, I don’t understand it. But still, I love it!

    AND POUNDLAND IS AWESOME.

    • Ann White says:

      I myself prefer wee cars! Much easier to park in wee spaces. And then there was Alex’s comment when we were overrun with ants that summer: “There are wee spiders in the bath!”

  3. I could never forget the wee spiders! The wee cars are both cute and convenient:)

  4. Elise says:

    Good to see you are doing well. We miss you!!!

  5. DJ says:

    I am convinced that Belfast is the friendliest wee city on the planet. I have never been to a place (this side the pond or that) where I have felt more at ease and welcomed with open arms by good-natured folks than Belfast.

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