Longford Town, at the moment, moving to reside in China in a week or two.
Schooled in St Josephs, St Michael's and the Tech 'Templemichael secondary School'.
Parents Eithne 'Heavey' Courtney and father Patrick 'Paddy' Courtney.
Grandparent's On my mothers side was Mary Feehily from Edgeworthstown County Longford. and Grandfather was Patrick Haevey from Ardagh County Longford.
On my Fathers side Rosetta 'McKenna' Courtney Drumlish County Longford. My grandfather was Patrick Courtney from Drumlish.
Lucky number seven in siblings. Five brothers and two sisters. Aaron, Conor,Brian,Ciaran, Gerard, and Collette and Jenifer.
After i had finished my leaving in Templemichael secondary school. I stayed on in Templemichael and did a PLC course their. Was in Business and finance.
Worked in Magna Donnellys for a few months as a temp, before being let go. Tesco's for 6 months, before moving to Carrick- On - Shannon. where i worked in MBNA, for just over seven years, and funny enough, it will be ten years today, when I started there.
Carrick was a nice place to work, would grow on you, but i traveled most weekends back home to Longford Town. Now so much to do in abundance in Carrick , compared to Longford Town now.
A lot of people from Longford, i would say a majority were from Longford that worked their in MBNA.
I got promoted after a year, became kinda mundane after that for a few years, then being let go we got redundancy monies. Some people i remember from thiere were Jo Purkis, John Gibbin's, Thomas Flood and Katie Smyth, all nice people, had great time with them all, and a great time for Jo Purkis, and my sister Collette worked there too.
On the back of being layed off. some of us were recruited to work for LAYA Health Care.
Only a few of us took the opportunity up. there was a move involved all the way to County Cork, in Middleton. couple of people i met and got on with were Sha Plumer and Clare Flynn.
Don't mind telling you the business itself never minded, some of the managers were tough to work for.
But aside from them, the new experience and all was paid for, house i stayed in was all paid for. I did travel back to Longford a lot of weekends, it was a fair auld trip to make.
Went through a work dry patch, that was tough going. Don't mind telling you went off the rails a bit partying. but had a great opportunity just pop up, with a new tech company. Amazing.com.
yes and it was amazing best job i ever had. was a start up company that trained people online distance learning with top course for elite learning. your talking 20 grand for all the combined course's. I am lucky I can do the courses freely.
The company was an american company that opened a Dublin branch myself and a couple few others worked there.
We got to travel to Texas, where the company is based.For training, all paid for flights accommodation everything paid for.
At the start was tough, accommodation in Dublin was tough, i worked from home for awhile, also stayed in Hostels and hotels at different times, before eventually finding suitable accommodation in Ballyfermot.
Total surprise to me, about city life, I thought I would hate it, but I loved it. was a pub next door to it almost , called Ruby's, great crack was always had there, one night coming out of Ruby's, found on the street a artificial leg, I also had spent time Inchicore.
After restructuring, we the Irish part of the company were let go off three of us, and a lot of Americans too. I have heard recently that they have pulled out of Dublin altogether
I had a decision to make, what to do, stay in Dublin go back to Longford, go abroad.
I had money saved, and i applied for TEFL, to teach English abroad.
I had no ties, nothing holding me back. I had a few months to kill, i worked temporary for the company that took over MBNA in Carrick-On-Shannon, called AvantCard. Also did volunteering work. And i joined Slimming World, where i lost over a time, up to 2 and a half three stones.
The course, can be studied from a very basic level to a high advance level. I decided on China. I started my internship with over seventy others, from all over the world. And to tell you how small the world is , My brother Connors's wife's brother, was also one OF the seventy interns there.
I was sent to Chengdu, and he was sent to another Provence, i don't need to tell you how huge China is.
Half hour from Guanghan, a bigger city where I would go, for night life.
The school i was in was Sichaum, aerospace polytechnic, University, my students consisted of two sperate groups, one were covering Logistics 29 students and engineering 20 students.
China itself as everybody knows is a communist country, there is limitations on social media we would be used to here. But they do have there own versions. and i was totally surprised about how advance China really was.
I was of the mind a backward country, people killing animals on the street, and worse, but my thoughts couldn't have been further away from the truth, its a very cosmopolitan country very advanced you would be shocked, i love it.
there is things that are frowned upon with the older generation is lgbt propaganda and demonstrations are totally banned.
On a different level there is the constant staring. They would walk up to you and just take you pic saying Juwairen 'Outsiders'. Just surprised, they don't see many white people, can be a bit jarring at time, but otherwise just an unusual thing to experience.
pollution is a huge problem too, you do notice, it. its like being in a smoky room, you see a lot of people wearing masks. and a habit they all seem to have is spitting, very very common. takes something to get used to.
but it is far from all being negative. the food is amazing. you wont get a curry like you do here, but its a lot healthier and much nicer there. they don't eat cats dogs as you may think. that is only in one village really. and its banned. which is good to see. They do eat , pigs brains, chicken feet, duck necks, scorpions, and believe or not spiders.
The norther part where I visited Juizihaigou Valley, the mountain views, unbelievable, and many lakes and waterfalls the colour of the water, beautiful.
I took a trip to Thailand also with a fellow Paddy, called Dani Ryan from Kilkenny, when Semster had ended, Took a trip to Thailand for two weeks, mainly spent drinking, sleeping, eating the odd bit and doing the touristy bit. was good craic though, gorgeous country, and I will be back for sure,
While in China Couldnt be in China and not visit the Chinese national animal the panda, in Chengdu zoo and a sanctuary seems a very simple kind of animal, just eats bamboo all day, all they do is eat and sleep, but they are beautiful .
Looking forward to going back in couple of weeks. I wont be part of the internship this, i will be working privately and studying mandarin in uni in Chengdu. you get a third of the social welfare here. i study six hours a week on Mandarin, and work twenty hours a week, i hope to finish mandarin and possibly get higher end work teaching.
Funny enough the place i am in is the unofficial gay capital of china which is good. there is bars and clubs, but not out out, and i am seeing someone over there, and i love it.
and would you believe it or not , the first bar i drank in was when you convert the Chinese to English Valentine's bar.
One of my favorite moments in life so far, has restored my faith in Longford, I Was heavily part of the gay marriage rights in Ireland. was great to be involved with. I have many close friends in Longford, apart from my brother Aaaron who i would be closet too, also Denise 'McNamara' Flood, Mary Oates, Lisa Ganley, Marty Murphy, Sean Rozekrans,, and John and Greg.
Like to enjoy myself in spare time, and travel alot. at first, i was so scared of traveling, now completely transformed, i am addicted.was in Germany twice, Holland, Portugal, apart from the places i mentioned earlier. I got drink poison in Germany didn't realise, how strong their beer was, after three days of hard drinking.Plan to travel to Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Tokyo, and different parts of China and America.
When I go back, I start a new school, a kindergarten and some adults too.
I asked Christopher as I asked everyone 'what's is outlook on life, what would he say to you to others'
''Sleep when your dead''
Christophers own photos and memories of first trip to China