Today’s St. Patrick’s Day and true to form I went to work sporting green trousers, a green sweater and a white bow-tie with shamrocks on it. My Mom is as Irish as McGinty’s goat and she raised us to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day. I often reflect on my heritage and a good part of it came from the Emerald Isle to America. Mom’s family, comprised of Hand’s and Crowley’s came from southern Ireland. Irish and Catholic to the bone. One of my great-aunts thought that Christ himself was Irish. She was shocked to learn that he was actually Jewish. One of the ancestors is on his way to sainthood. One of the great aunts worked for the Queen of England. Mom told me we’re related to Mary Queen of Scots. These are just some of the stories I got from Mom and Grandma.
At work today I greeted students, teachers and others with, “top of the mornin’ to you.” Most everyone responded with a polite hello or a “Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Mr. Watkins.” Mom taught me that the correct response was, “and the rest of the day to you,” but that seems to have been lost over the years. I hope to make it to Ireland. It’s one of my dreams. I used to have a collection of records by the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem, but alas I have no record player anymore. I’m indebted to Youtube and the person that uploaded “Brennan on the Moor.” I hope you enjoy it.
May God be with you and bless you.
May you see your children’s children.
May you be poor in misfortunes
and rich in blessings.
May you know nothing but happiness
from this day forward.”–Irish Marriage Blessing