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by | Mar 15, 2024 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

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March Celebrations

Ah, March, the month where time seems to vanish faster than a leprechaun with a
pot of gold! It feels like just yesterday we were toasting to the New Year, and now
here we are, bidding adieu to those dreary winter days. If you listen closely, you’ll
catch the locals whispering those classic phrases passed down through the ages,
“Ah, there’s a grand stretch in the evening!”, It’s like the whole world is on Irish time,
“it’s bright now up until nearly half past six (18:30)—definitely a reason to celebrate!

And speaking of celebrations, March is our time to tip our hats to Maewyn Succat,
better known as St. Patrick. Picture this: a Roman lad gets nabbed by Irish raiders,
sent by Niall of the nine hostages, a story for another time. He ends up shepherd-ing in the lush green hills of Ireland, then has a vision that sends him darting back home. Renames himself Patricius because, hey, “father figure” sounds pretty righteous, and then BOOM—gets another vision telling him to come back and convert the pagans to Christianity as his predecessor Palladius did not get on with the Irish and had to high tail it out of Ireland. Legend has it, he did a bang-up job, setting up churches, schools, and monasteries like it was going out of style. By the time he kicked the bucket in 461, he was Ireland’s poster child for saintly behaviour and by the seventh century was revered as Irelands Patron Saint – Go Patrick, Go Patrick. He even kicked all of the snakes out of Ireland, well the reptile snakes lol.

Now, fast forward to 1631, and the church decides to throw St. Patrick a party on the day he kicked the bucket. Conveniently enough, smack dab in the middle of Lent on the 17 th of March—a time when everyone’s supposed to be fasting and abstaining. Yeah, right! St. Patrick’s Day (or as locals say Paddy’s day) became the ultimate excuse for indulgence and revelry, much to the delight of every Irish person.

And those parades? Oh, they’re a hoot! Started off across the pond in North
America, with New York kicking things off in 1762. It took us Irish a good while to
catch on, but boy, when we did, we did it with style. Nowadays, you can’t swing a
shillelagh without hitting a parade float or two. And let me tell you, those parades are more than just a march from A to B—they’re a full-blown spectacle, with locals
dressing up as politicians and celebrities, poking fun at anything and everything. It’s
a bit like a comedy show on wheels!

Back in my day, those parades were a chance for businesses to show off their shiny
new toys—decaled cars, fancy equipment (free advertisement), and fire trucks with
sirens loud enough to wake the dead would trill the kids and adults alike. And there
we were, the Maureen Wise school of Irish Dancing, strutting our stuff in kilts that
were more breeze than fabric, thanks to the good ol’ March chill. My mammy always said, “N’eer cast a clout till May is out,” but there we were, dancing up a storm in
freezing temperatures, doing our best Michael Flatley impressions to stay warm.

Looking back now, I can’t help but crack a smile at those memories. Despite the cold
and the chaos, marching in our local parade was a rite of passage. Mam and dad
knew it would fill our hearts with joy—and maybe a few goosebumps—and they were right such great memories. It’s moments like those that make me proud to be Irish. So, whether you’re Irish by birth, blood or just in spirit, come join us in the revelry. After all, there’s always room for one more in our tribe!

Have fun and Craic
Happy St. Patricks Day