Good Evening from Belfast!
Today was another busy day and included me speaking at an Autism NI event at Stormont, home of the Northern Ireland General Assembly.
The morning started with me being picked up at my hotel by Dr. Arlene Cassidy, the CEO of Autism NI.
She recently purchased a new Jeep and it came with a mini Jeep which she keeps on her dashboard. By the way, both times I was about to enter the car, I tried to get in on the right side, which is of course the driver’s side here in the UK. Arlene said she thought about getting me a toy steering wheel for the passengers side to make me feel at home.
After Arlene and I had a short coffee, we headed to Stormont for the speaking event.
The shop we had our coffee in had chocolate boxes that could be given as thank you gifts for watching pets. I figured it was sort of a novelty gift, but Arlene told me that apparently in the UK, people do indeed give chocolate boxes as thank you gifts for others watching their pets.
Once at Stormont, aside from speaking to the attendees, which consisted of members of the Northern Ireland General Assembly, Autism NI staff and other local autism supporters, I listed to a speech from a young man who lives here in Belfast. He was the Northern Ireland representative for the autism advocate portion of the event and he spoke about his schooling.
My speech covered my autism advocacy story and how I ended up in Northern Ireland.
After the event ended, I was presented with a lovely ornament as a gift that featured a painting of Stormont. I will be certain to hang it on my Christmas Tree as a memory of my time in Belfast!
Once I returned back to my hotel, I had dinner at the hotel cafe, which consisted of fish and chips, with cheesecake and tea for dessert. A true Irish meal I suppose!
– The ZEZ