13th March 2011
Piccadilly, London W1J 9DZ
St Patrick’s Day Parade
It’s almost a given that, along with the Lord Mayor’s Show, it’s destined to be raining when the St Patrick’s Day Parade gets under way at the Western end of Piccadilly. Of course, this isn’t by chance: It’s a little known fact that St Patrick is the patron saint of precipitation, which is why, like the Inuit and their (apparently mythical) multitudinous appellations for snow, the Irish have hundreds of names for rain. Well, a good number, anyway.
So, here are the well-prepared and plucky ladies of the Kentstown and Seneschalstown (‘K&S’ for short) Accordion Band waiting for the off, and as we can see later on, the rain’s eased up enough for them to discard their somewhat inelegant wet weather protection.
Incidentally, despite its large Irish population, central London has only been celebrating St Paddy with a major parade since 2002 (the ex-pat folk in Kilburn have their own parade for years, of course): they’ve been celebrating in the US since the early 17th century and there’s been an annual parade in Montreal for almost 200 years. Even Moscow have had one since the 1990’s.