Mobile downloads -- don't you just love them! It took about 2 hours to see the whole parade, and I think that girl was upside for most of it!

There were performers from all over the world, so far as I could see.

There's something so fantastically...democratic about an event like the St Patrick's Parade. I mean, Irish people often try to present themselves as being a cynical bunch, but the crowd at the parade, Irish and visitors alike were hardly cynical. It was like we were all 6 again, and it was fantastic. And I'll tell you a secret. I used to be in my school band. I loved it, but when I reached about 14, I gave it up because I thought it wasn't cool. Well, after watching the parade last week, I totally regretted hanging up my trombone, because there's just something wonderful about making music as part of a group. And, honestly, who really cares what's passing for cool among a bunch of jaundiced 14-year-olds. Is it too late to start again, I wonder?

Anyway. This weekend, I'd been invited to go for a little hike in Howth, but I'd completely forgotten about my Saturday job. Fortunately, the Mom texted me the night before to ask me if I would could meet her with the kids at Cabinteely Park, where one of them was attending a birthday party. The weather was good and the kids were out of doors and I got a ride home so it was a very easy gig this weekend. And just as well, because at college, the pressure is on. I can hardly believe it's nearly April already. The end of my masters, and decision time fast approaching. I am going to have to work super-hard. Fortunately for this literature post-grad, there are some public events coming up that are at least slightly related to my coursework and research, so I guess I can at least attend those with a clear conscience. There's a poetry festival on in Dun Laoighire at the weekend and starting some time next week, Dublin's "One City One Book" thingy, which is kind of a neat idea, as the point is for everyone in Dublin to read the same book, sort of like a giant book club. And this year is really totally relevant to my work in Gothic literature because the book is the Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, which is one of my favourites of all time.

Re. poetry, I have to confess that I have never been able to get into it as I have fiction. I am not a very patient person and it can be hard sometimes. But being in Dublin, it's good to have the opportunity to hear poetry being read by real poets in, after all, one of the top places for writing in the English language. I read that, years ago, the ancient Irish bards had to learn how to compose fancy poems while lying naked under a big heap of cold rocks. That's dedication for you.


Looks amazing; I'm so totally there next year!


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