Saturday, April 2, 2011
Warning: there are plenty of photos in this post. I apologize in advance- but enjoy nonetheless!
This year was my first St. Patricks Day here in Ireland and so I decided to make the most of it! There was a parade on in the town, which everyone told me that I would hate and that I should expect to be disappointed, however I thought it was great! (I think most people here have this idea in their heads that Americans all have this huge enormous glammed up parades when in reality its mostly tractors with tinsel and etc. haha!)
Here are Linda, James and Lisa waiting for the parade to begin. (all three ginger. perfect little irish crowd for paddys day!! i kid, i kid...kinda...) (by the by, James DOES have red hair. its more reddish, but enough to be ginge. he in is COMPLETE denial about it though. He swears he has a soul, unlike a ginger.)
This is actually a Bagpipe Band from my husbands secondary school (over here secondary school would be our equivalent of middle/high school)! Instead of regular symphonic bands they normally have bagpipe bands! I thought that was really unusual and pretty cool- but I guess its normal enough.
Here are some drummers from another schools bagpipe band. I thought the way they had a marching swing with their sticks between the beats looked so cool- I wish I could have properly caught it on camera!
St. Patrick's day parade wouldn't be complete without St. Patrick of course! There were several St. Patrick's throughout the parade, some on motor bike, some doing back flips down the street, some chasing "snakes".
I put this picture in mainly because I caught a Guard in the picture. Over here the police are called "Garda" which is Irish for Police. They definitely have to be on high alert during these type of public events since there are so many travellers and scumbags who start drinking super early in the day and cause a lot of trouble for everyone else. ( I will have to explain travellers and scumbags in a whole other post. and I clarify that not all of them cause trouble, its a minority, but a LOUD minority.)
Here is Linda, James and myself with our first pints of the day at the Locke (very popular pub in Limerick right on the Shannon)- James and Linda have a standing tradition of going drinking together for Paddy's day- I think they have been at it for nearly 10 years now!
Here is one of the many Traditional bands that was playing on Paddy's day. These 5 people are actually all siblings and have been playing together for as long as they could pick up the instruments! I thought that was pretty cool- I'm pretty sure if my sister and I were in a band together we would have killed each other pretty quickly haha.
Of course there is plenty of dancing throughout the day (depending on how many pints naturally)
Here is a picture of King John's Castle here in Limerick (recognize it from my header?) It's one of the better castles I've seen here in Ireland and since its right on the Shannon its easy to get some gorgeous shots of it! Thankfully we had amazing weather for Paddy's day- Sunny with little wind! It was cold, but I'll take cold over rain and wind any day!
My first ever pint of Guinness- I'm not that big of a fan but a lot of the taste depends on what pub you get it in(and how they store the kegs and pour the drink and etc.). The pub we headed to is known for its good pints so I decided to take the plunge and get a Guinness for myself. It was actually pretty nice! (this by no measure means I am a convert to the black stuff now. I'll stick to regular beer, thanks.)
And of course, the rest of the day was spent drinking and singing rebel songs (hah!!) It was great "craic" as the irish say. I'm really glad I went out and really made the most of my first Paddy's Day- I feel like I'm missing out on so much living here, but I know if I ever do leave I will regret missing out on stuff like this! (however I will NEVER miss the weather in Ireland.)
UPDATE: I forgot to mention- that whole wear green on Paddy's day or get pinched thing? doesn't happen here. Most people have never even heard of that over here and find it hilarious. (note to self- don't tell anyone else that cause you'll get pinched. even if you are wearing green. damn cheats.)