I know this comes to you a day after St. Patrick’s Day, but I’ve not written about this holiday, and it’s time. I’m not Irish, but I’m a wannabe—they seem to have lots of friends and a ton of fun. Besides that, I like green.
I have visited beautiful Ireland and experienced the energy and joy of her people. A bus driver taught me to sing Dublin’s unofficial anthem, Molly Malone. A local Irish friend commands a room with her accent and intelligence. My favorite cathedral is St. Patrick’s in NYC, named after the patron saint of Ireland. While living in Denver, downtown became alive on March 17 with green music, food, beer, and laughter. Seeing the Chicago River turn from gray-blue to Irish green on this festive day, was a thrill. I would never turn away from luck or a good hunt, so I still look for four-leaf clovers. Best of all, I have a granddaughter named Ireland.
Celebrations for different ethnic groups are refreshing, and I hope they motivate us to research our heritage and join friends and family in playful activities. America is a young country, and every person initially came from somewhere else. Even in the Bible, as I recall, Adam and Eve’s children were not born in North America. My mother was one-eighth Native American mixed with French and English. In Branson, Mo., there is a church on Compton Hill built by my great grandfather. My dad’s family was German, Dutch, and French.
In America, according to Google, we celebrate African Americans in February, Jewish and Asian Pacific Americans in May, Hispanic Americans from mid-September to mid-October, German and Italian Americans in October, and American Indians in November.
Where my husband and I spend winters, many clubs including Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Harley Davidson, showing many people like hanging out where common heritage, interests, and geographical locations are shared. You can know ethnic groups are represented in every club.
It’s a good thing—belonging, and knowing what and who influenced our personality, talents, and interests, matters. Genetics plus experiences contribute to our mental wellness. Nurture versus nature is a conversation with merit. We are a culmination of those who came before us, and our traits will travel through future generations.
An advantage of celebrating various cultures is we learn while we share tastes, colors, and language. Quality of living is enhanced if we appreciate neighbors, near and far. One reason people travel internationally is to experience what we have right here, different cultures. We are lucky that way. Where else in the world can we find America’s rich diversity?
My cousin sent me a green shirt and shamrock socks, so you can know I was decked out while visiting and giggling with people celebrating the Irish.
I hope you did too.
Until the next time: Live while you live.
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