Every year on March 17th is St Patrick’s day, or the Feast of Saint Patrick. Irishness is celebrated all over the world!
To most NON-Irish people, St Patrick’s day does not have much meaning apart from the ‘let’s get to an Irish pub wear green and drink beer’ – not much cultural background there right?
And I YES i have lived here for 6 years now, but I realize that most non Irish may be in that same position as I was a few years back.
So I thought i’d tell you a little bit about St Patrick’s day, who he was, why he is important in the Irish culture, and what you might see on St Patrick’s day.
YES! there’s more to St Patrick’s day that green outfits and beer! I swear!
St Patrick’s day is actually a religious and cultural celebration – Who knew!
According to the legend, he brought Christianity to Ireland, & freed them from snakes. The holiday marks St. Patrick’s death and been celebrated for over 1500 years.
St Patrick’s day used to be a quiet day in Ireland up until 1960’s , before then Pubs where closed on Paddy’s day – Can you believe it? It obviously did not make it easy for the Irish people to celebrate, but thankfully laws changed and now Pubs are open!
Let’s go for a pint – or 20!
To say that St Patrick’s day might turn into a bit of mess is an understatement, a lot of people are on the streets, a lot of tourists, combined with day drinkers. Messy! As a result I haven’t celebrated it (for real) in a few years, simply because the last time I did was a very very messy/blurry episode for me. Almost got run over by a car. Quick tip – If you have to drink all day, don’t do it on Vodka on an empty stomach!
Back to Patrick, He was NOT Irish, his real birth name was NOT even Patrick – Come on what is it with re-naming people in Ireland, they have done it to me too by the way. (my name is too French for the Irish)
So, Patrick! His name was actually Maewyn Succat and was born in Roman Britain, so he is technically a Brit! Let’s not get into what Irish people think about the Brits, not that kind of blog.
The legend says he freed Ireland from snakes, even though some say there never were any snakes in Ireland – Good marketing campaign? what to you all think?
What’s the story (Irish slang) with the Shamrock?
So it is said that Patrick/Maewyn used the Shamrock to explain the holy trinity ( for the non catholic the holy trinity is the concept of god as 3 entities = Father, Son/Baby Jesus, Holy Spirit) – then apparently that’s how Shamrocks became super popular, way to go Paddy!
Going Green? Go Green or go home! On Paddy’s day you’ll see green everywhere. Food, beers (green food coloring in everyyyyyyyyyyyything) tshirts, make-up, hair, even rivers, you name it – anything you can imagine will turn green.
Besides wearing green there will also be parades. The actual insane thing about that though, is that there are so many Irish expats and descendants that the biggest St Patrick day Parade is actually held outside of Ireland – Nuts!
So that’s what the deal is with St Patrick’s day, hope you learned a thing or 2, also below is the St Patrick’s day Parade route in Dublin Ireland (this Friday)
Lá Fhéile Pádraig Shona Duit!