Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tradition St. Paddy's Celebration in Boston

It's that time of year again... Ever since my twin sister moved to Boston attend law school at the New England School of Law, I've visited and for lack of a better word, "celebrated" St. Patrick's Day with my sister and her crazy lawyer friends. This year was no different. As we hit the sky in our swanky Jet Blue ride, we started our trip with warm white wine on the plane, only to be followed by copious amounts of beer and shots. While this blog post has nothing to do with food or fitness, I feel the need to share one of my favorite events I've participated in for the past 4 years: the St. Paddy's Day parade in Southie, Boston. Now this is not just any parade. It takes skill and dedication to get through this one glorious day. Each year, my sister hosts anywhere from 4 to 8 people in her tiny Beacon Hill apartment- all women who require showers and hair dryers that blow fuses in the apartment on a regular basis. The effort to get 8 girls showered and ready for a full day of celebrations is nothing short of a special forces mission. First, we set our alarms for 6am, and the first poor soul gets up to begin the shower line-up. Usually the best sport in the house is my roommate Talley, who also forgoes hours of sleeping based on her spot in the room (we somehow shoved 2 inflatable mattresses into my sister's tiny room along with her full size bed to sleep 4 people). Because Talley's mattress is by the door, everyone who goes to the bathroom or enters/leaves the bedroom has to physically step on her inflatable mattress near her head. It's quite the scene, but all in the name of fun and tradition do we endure it.

Following the endless row of showers, we enter the hair dryer line-up, followed by flat irons and makeup... Then the fun part: the St. Paddy's Day gear! Every year we bring up beads, shamrock earrings, glittery stickers, green drinking straws and anything else we can find to dress up our outfits for the day. This year we kicked it up a notch with shamrock knee-high socks and jean skirts. Now that everyone's decked out in glowing green costumes, we move on to a simple yet nutritious breakfast of bagels, cream cheese, and of course, mimosas.

And we're off! It's almost 9am and we must get in line at the epic Beer Garden, a bar just off of L street on Broadway. Beer Garden is our annual tradition and now the center of our historical celebration. We are always the first in line so that we can snag the large bay window area in the front of the bar with tables. This allows us to drink, eat and be merry as we watch the parade go by. The staff is superior to any bar staff here in Richmond. They keep the green Bud Light aluminum cans flowing before you even set your empty one down. The Irish car bombs and intermittent shots throughout the day are expensive but worth it when you are buying for a crew of 15. When you come to Boston and role with us, you have to accept that you will burn a large whole in your wallet. Sometimes you don't remember doing it either. All in all, the day wraps up sometime around dinner where we almost always snag an unmarked van cab to take us back into town for a dinner we don't remember, and where we continue to party until we drop. I usually never make it past 11pm but at that point, I've been drinking since 8am and don't mind tapping out for the count. So in a nutshell, the 4th annual St. Paddy's Day celebration in Boston was a huge success. Some people lost their debit cards, iPhones, and dignity, but somehow we all survive.
Thank you to my wonderful sister for making this tradition one of the most memorable times of my life!

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