Angela Garcia, solutions architect at Storm Technology, talks to Siliconrepublic.com about leaving behind Portugal’s history in favour of Ireland’s opportunities and an ambiguous summer.
Where are you from?
I’m from Guimarães, a beautiful city in the north of Portugal, full of history.
The city had an important role in the foundation of the Portuguese national identity and it was there that some of the most relevant events leading to Portuguese independence occurred. It is known as the cradle of the Portuguese nation and you can found written on one of the city’s old walls, “Here was born Portugal” – a historical reference for residents and visitors.
The residents are very proud of their history and are very attached to the city, to their traditions and to the local football club. The food is amazing and the weather… Well, it rains a lot in the winter, but the spring and the summer are great!
How long have you been in Ireland?
We arrived on 12 November 2014. Me, my boyfriend and our daughter. The logistics weren’t easy – my daughter was 13 months at the time – but, within a couple of weeks, we found an apartment and we settled down. Things got easier after that.
Why did you move here?
My boyfriend and I always wanted to have the experience of living in a different country, for the opportunity to know another culture and to travel, and for the chance to improve our English. Also, we didn’t have many prospects for progress in our career areas in Portugal. So, when I received an offer to work in Storm Technology we decided to take this chance and, so far, we are very happy.
What’s your role in the company?
I’m a solutions architect for Microsoft Dynamics CRM. I have been working with Dynamic CRM since 2006. My work involves developing custom solutions, translating the customer business requirements into a well-designed solution that gets the best leverage from the Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform.
How would you describe your working environment?
The environment is great. The people are very friendly and are always available to help. I couldn’t feel more welcome.
Storm has been a great place to work. There are a lot of challenging projects in my area, but the management value and respect their employees – for me as an employee, seeing my work recognised is a great motivator.
What do you like most about your job?
The chance to get to know different businesses. I get to spend time with the customer’s site, challenging myself to map the business’s processes to the Dynamic CRM in the most advantageous way, and then start all over with a new project.
Was it difficult to adjust to living and working in Ireland?
Aside from being apart from my family and friends, not really. The language in the first few months could be difficult, but people were very patient and comprehensive with this foreigner’s slippery language.
What surprised you about moving to Ireland, if anything?
The weather was not a surprise, but I confess that I was expecting a bit more from the summer… When does the summer start here, really?
One of the last surprises that I came across was that bike brakes work in the opposite way than I was used to. The rear brakes are on the left here and in all countries where you drive on the left.
How does your working life help to make you feel at home here?
The opportunity to be part of so many different and challenging projects, with such nice people, to feel welcome and to see my work recognised – that’s very important for me and for my well-being.
The perfect balance comes when, after this, I still have time available to be with my family and play with my daughter. I didn’t have that before.
What do you like most about your adopted home?
Dublin is a very good city to live in. The people are very friendly and there is always something to do or to see. I love that, in Dublin, you live relatively close to everything, have good transportation options and don’t have to drive.
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