The elevator door opened. Putting my weight into it, I pushed the loaded luggage cart forward into the hotel lobby. My girls followed me, my wife holding the baby. To our left, in the wide and spacious Embassy Suites lobby, a coffee station beckoned. While my wife assembled her usual cup (cream and sugar), I noticed a television broadcasting a parade. What is this? I wondered. I moved closer to the screen and saw it was a St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York City. Hundreds and hundreds of police officers, firefighters, marching band members, and others marched smiling through the streets of New York. “I think today is St. Patrick’s day, girls,” I informed my daughters. “Its’ today?” they asked.
You see, growing up in Oregon, St. Patrick’s Day… well, it just wasn’t a big deal. But now residing on the east coast- yeah, big deal. Very big.
After arriving home, we decided to order a pizza. Fifteen minutes after placing an order, I jumped back into the car and drove to our favorite pizzeria. Upon opening the door, I immediately noticed green decorations adorning the dining room, as I was greeted by a young woman wearing a shirt that read, “Whiskey Business” in green letters and shamrocks. She told me the story of how she had purchased the shirt months ago because she needed something new to wear on St. Patrick’s Day this year.
Before returning home, I stopped in at the grocery store to grab some eggs for breakfast the next day. Inside the store stood a couple wearing green bowler hats with leprechauns attached. Passing them, I overheard discussion of the St. Patrick’s Day event they were headed for later that evening.
I grabbed the eggs and made my way to the checkout. There, the checker asked, “Doing something for St. Patrick’s Day?”
Yeah, it’s a big deal here.