What is St. Patrick’s Day Like in Ireland? We Asked Five Irish Expats to Find Out

By March 16, 2018 Blog No Comments

St. Patrick’s Day is here!

In an international city like Shanghai, the Irish national holiday is all about friends, fun, and lots of beer. It got us wondering – what is St. Patrick’s Day actually like in the country that it matters most?

Apparently, it’s not all about drinking (though there’s a lot of that too). We got together some of our Irish friends living in China to answer our questions.

Joseph Hatch

Age: 37
Hometown: Dublin

What do you usually do on St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland?
I’d usually go to the local for pints, I never bothered going into the city to watch the parade.

What is the funniest question you’ve been asked or the funniest assumption that you’ve heard about Irish people in China?
The most common assumption that people make is that we’re a bunch of drunks – Chinese people just assume we’re from England or the same as England. Funniest thing is a lot of Chinese seem to be aware that Ireland is one of the few countries that you can’t get divorced in, that always struck me as weird that so many Chinese people knew that fact.

What is your favourite alcoholic drink?
I usually order a Guinness, or I do like an Asahi if I’m drinking cans.

Niall

Age: 27
Hometown: Longford

What do you usually do on St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland?
Plenty of drinking with friends. Although it’s been more than 4 years since I was home for St. Patrick’s day now.

What is the funniest question you’ve been asked about Irish people in China?
More than one Chinese person has said to me “Oh I hear you can’t get divorced in your country!” One girl went as far as saying this idea was “romantic”.

What is your favourite alcoholic drink?
Guinness.

Darren O Connell

Age: 26
Hometown: Cork

What do you usually do on St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland?
St Patricks Day in Ireland is a big one on the calendar! Accross the country in cities and towns we have parades, music, dancing and cultural activities earlier in the morning usually attracting families and tourists! For others they enjoy the day off and if the weather is good (rarely) for St Patricks Day, my friends and I would have BBQ and go out to the town after. If not, usuallly the pub is a good place to watch sports and have fun!

What is the most common assumption about Irish people in China?
The most common assumption I hear often is that we are all raving alcoholics. Or, in China, everyone assummes we are from the UK because they know limited things about Ireland. Friends often ask my opinions about the potatoes we eat at regular dinners, from my expert Irish perspective

What is your favourite alcoholic drink?
Lol, I may lose my Irish Passport saying so, but I’m a fan of vodka as a drink of choice!

Ciaran Padraig Hamilton

Age: 27
Hometown: Dundalk

What do you usually do on St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland?
Mass in the morning, parades in the afternoon and pub in the evening.

What is the funniest question you’ve been asked in China?
 Is it true that Irish people can not get a divorce?

What is your favourite alcoholic drink?
Cider, Guinness or Rum.

Chris Bond

Age: 27
Hometown: Dublin

What do you usually do on St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland?
When you are younger you go into the city centre to watch the parade with your family, but when you get older you usually go to bar, nightclub etc. Sometimes there is an event like a concert

What is the funniest question you’ve been asked or assumption that you’ve heard about Irish people in China?
People think Ireland is part of the U.K.

What is your favourite alcoholic drink?
A delicious IPA

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