Castlebar .News
Community News and Information
New Castlebar HomePage | Photo Gallery | THE Castlebar Directory | Castlebar Links | Nostalgia | Bulletin Board 

Last Updated: Jan 11th, 2007 - 21:22:05 
Photography -> Frank Cawley

Castlebar's Front Page 
 Frank Cawley

New Content Editor Login

Frank Cawley

The Boston St Patrick's Day Parade
By Frank Cawley
Mar 21, 2006, 01:36

Email this article
 Printer friendly page

The 105th annual Boston St Patrick's Day Parade took place 2 days after the day on Sunday the 19th of March.  I was there representing the unelected Castlebar Monster Raving Lunatic Party.

They say i'ts hard to capture a leprechaun, and why wouldn't it be when the little pwick is hiding himself on the front bumper of one of Boston’s finest fire engines? A man would have to set fire to something, then call out the “Galway Brigade” fire engines just to even have a chance of catching him. I didn’t manage to capture him, but I got close enough to take this quick snap…..

Barney the wonder bear, one of the last few remaining grizzlies that’s to be found in New England. In another few years you won’t find any bears nor petrol prices like those shown in the background. The locals are going practically mental because they have to pay the equivalent of 50 cent a litre. It’s interesting to note that the average US car used the same amount of petrol in the 70’s as the average gas guzzler does today. All of the improvements and efficiencies in gas mileage have used up with larger plant and bigger engines.

A red stretch Chevy, and if your sharp enough you’ll see a small mural on the side wall of Al’s Liquors. “Ireland divided will never be at peace” This is on west Broadway right in the heart of Southie, an area of Boston, as welcoming to our English neighbours as the Celtic supporters club on the Falls road.

These boys will be off to Shannon soon.

A salute for the lads from an Irish Vietnam Vet. There is a very strong respect in the US for the men in uniform, and none stronger than the people who made sacrifices for their country in the past. The last time I saw someone salute an Irish army officer was at the bar in the officers’ mess, all pints were 50 p.

St Pat himself, you might wonder what the kids are doing with polystyrene shamrocks around their heads, well it was minus 2 for most of the parade, and the wind would cut through ya. I forgot my balaclava, and I almost lost my ears to the brisk northeasterly wind.

This says a lot about America. It’s such a large country and so influenced by film and TV that you have a whole section of society whose religion is based solidly in Star Wars. This trooper is a middle aged grown man who works during the day as a plasterer, and at night as a gimp in George Lucas’s army. I’m not to sure about his lady friend in the background she was speaking in ebock or something. I thought she was from Belmullet at first, I said “ I come in peace, friend, what part of Erris do you spawn from” but F off is the same no matter what language you speak or what Galaxy your from.

The happy tin men. I only discovered recently that the wizard of Oz has a strong “gay” theme running through the entire film. I must have been asleep: a cowardly lion, and a cross dressing scare crow should have been enough evidence. Any way as with Storm Troopers, there are thousands of men and lady men, who are lined up all across the land, who would almost give their right handbag to have the opportunity to dress up as any of the characters in this classic film. What it has to do with driving snakes out of Ireland isn’t quite clear, but that’s the great thing about a St Patrick ’s Day parade all you have to do is where the tiniest bit of green and bobs your auntie….

Finally here he is again minding his gold. He wasn’t the only man of Irish descent minding the gold. I saw thousands of little men and women, minding their cans of the US equivalent of Dutch gold, for fear the police would find them. It’s illegal to drink an alcoholic beverage in public in Massachusetts but it’s hard to get caught when the police are marching in the parade, and your smuggling your hooch around in either your belly or your Dunkin Donuts coffee cup. I never in my life saw so many people drinking Dunkin Donuts coffee. It was a good parade – my highlight was seeing the Budweiser Clydesdales, truly magnificent horses, performing a truly magnificent job. If ever an animal was man’s best friend I’m afraid to say the poor mutt would come in second best. It was a bit rougher than the Irish or NY parade, there was a strong smell of drink every where, most people said they were “loaded” hours before kick off which was 1pm. Saying all that, the police had a zero tolerance attitude, and they only managed to arrest 35 people. There must have been 100,000 people there, and you get arrested in the states at the drop of a hat. So that was a good display. I didn’t see one fight but then again I didn’t see one Rangers top either, be it from New York or Glasgow. ;-)

© Copyright 2006 by the author(s)/photographer(s) and

Top of Page

Frank Cawley
Latest Headlines
Castlebar Christmas Day Swim Lough Lannagh 2006
Drombeg Stone Circle.
One Lucky Salmon
The Galway Races
Castlecarra Lough Carra April 2006
The Boston St Patrick's Day Parade
Some Small Black & White
Vast improvements in Charlestown
New England Fall aka Autumn
Annagh Bay