Now in England we don’t really make much of a fuss about Saint George and given that most academics agree that he never set foot on anything that is now English soil, why should we? We might wave his flag around on sporting occasions but that’s generally the limit of his influence today. The Irish on the other hand, have a very different attitude to their patron saint, Saint Patrick.
Saint Patrick as you all know, did two things of note. He single-handedly drove out all the snakes from Ireland and then went on to invent Guinness. History does not recall just how bad the snake problem in Ireland was or indeed which species of snakes were running amuck, but we must assume that things were getting pretty bad if they had to call for the local saint. On my recent adventures to Ballyjamesduff in rural Ireland I was privileged enough to witness the huge excitement and flamboyant celebrations which are synonymous with Ireland and Saint Patrick’s day as they recall their joy at returning to the farmland now free of slithering pests.
From what I have been able to observe, local custom demands both the public exhibition of every possible piece of farming machinery together with a small sampling of the Holy Drink, namely Guinness. Over the centuries this festivity has been refined and is now run like clockwork along roughly the lines of one hour’s parade involving every fecking tractor in the county immediately followed by five hour’s worth of the drinking of the Holy Drink, namely Guinness.
There now follows a visual montage of the first part of the celebrations, known as, The Parade.