Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Top o' da mornin' to ye..!

Ireland is a mass hangover today courtesy of that ancient serpent exterminator, Saint Patrick.
It's quite funny to look around the office; pretty much everyone has an ever-so-slightly gray pallor and the drone of voices is a little huskier than normal. It's a funny aul' place, this. Every year on March 17th traffic across the country grinds to a halt around midday as St Patrick's Day parades take to the streets not only in Dublin but in pretty much most towns. Even the little town I live in had a parade; apparently about 1000 people turned out to watch which is actually pretty good (you haven't seen the size of the village I live in!)

In my 8 1/2 years in Ireland I have only bothered watching the parade in Dublin twice. The first time it was bitterly cold and lashing rain outside, but being our first year in the country we kind of had to go, really. The second time we went because it wasn't lashing rain and we wanted to see if the parade was any better. It wasn't. This seems something of a tradition here: Mobs of people watching a mediocre parade that has been advertised as the best thing since they discovered the Bog Man.
Only, you don't get to see anything except the back of the head in front of you and to do this you have to be trained in the Art of Fighting for your Space in a Crowd, else you get elbowed and pushed and shoved until you pop out of the back of the crowd like a champagne cork. So most people forego going into Dublin for the parade - the onlookers on the streets are mostly tourists. The locals are all in the pub, eating and drinking waaaay too much and perhaps watching the Parade as it is broadcast on the small out-of-focus TV mounted in a dark corner above the bar.

This was the tradition we followed yesterday, Hubby and I (after going for a breakfast run on our bikes in the morning because it was one of those rare St Patrick's Days when the sun was shining on the Emerald Isle). For the rest of the afternoon pub grub and too much beer was the order of the day, in an old country pub filled with locals from the area thirsty for a pint after the parade.

'Twas a grand day indeed :-)


angel said...

Heh heh... a breakfast run and hanging in a pub all day sounds fantastic!

BazL said...

I woulda definitely been there with y'all sis.


Terri said...

Angel - Wanna come?

BazL - I couldn't think of a better companion :-)