Happy St. Patrick’s Day, and: proof that spring exists

St. Patrick's Day at the Manse

It’s another flag day at the Manse, this one in honour of that chap who drove the snakes out of Ireland. (Were he alive today, do you suppose he could drive the wasps out of Queensborough?)

Today being St. Patrick’s Day and all, it was only natural that Raymond would rummage around in his growing flag collection and replace the Ontario flag that normally flies from the front porch of the Manse with the Irish tricolour. I mean, when you have a flag collection, why not celebrate various national holidays that way?

Also, Ireland has a strong connection with this area, as with all of Canada, in that many early settlers here came from that country. Queensborough is, in fact, named for Queensborough, Ireland – a place that, judging by its lack of representation on the internet, is probably now a suburb of the nearby city of Drogheda. The Irish Queensborough – which is close to the mouth of the River Boyne, which empties into the Irish Sea – was the last place in his native country that one Daniel Thompson saw when he set sail, in the mid-1800s, for Liverpool and then Canada; Thompson eventually made his way to a place two blocks from where the Manse is today, and basically turned himself into the founder of our village. And named it to boot. (He was the first postmaster, so he was allowed that privilege.)

So there’s a good Irish connection for you!

But another fun thing I discovered as I prepared to write this post was this: Contrary to the doubts we are probably all feeling at the end of this very harsh winter, there will be a spring. And grass and plants and trees and things will grow, and be ever so green. (Like in Ireland.)

Here’s how I found this out. I did a search through my old posts here at Meanwhile, at the Manse to see if I’d written about St. Patrick’s Day before – I wouldn’t want to repeat myself – and came across this post wherein I’d mentioned Raymond’s flag collection. It was written on June 24 last year, St. Jean Baptiste Day in Quebec, and on that day the Manse sported Quebec’s Fleurdelisé. (And I mentioned other possible flag days, including St. Patrick’s Day.) But people, look at my photo!

Fleurdelisé at the Manse

Look at the lushness! The greenery! The geraniums! Is it not balm to the eyes after this winter we’ve had? And in contrast to the dirty snow and mud that are all around us on this St. Patrick’s Day?

Spring will come. The world will be green again. I’ve seen the proof. Right here at the Manse.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

6 thoughts on “Happy St. Patrick’s Day, and: proof that spring exists

  1. I love the idea of changing the flag and honouring the different special days. Certainly the Irish flag would be one of them for us! I always feel a little irritation on St. Patrick’s Day, because of the wannabe Irishmen/women cavorting around and being silly. I am proud to be ethnically 3/8ths Irish and if I was so inclined, I, and my three offspring, would qualify for Irish citizenship. My niece, lives in Ireland – with a REAL Irishman – and she is currently going through the citizenship process, based on her heritage.

    Completely off topic I just want to say that “Patrick” is a lovely name for a man and coincidentally is the name of my older son!

    Spring is definitely creeping closer here in the “far south”; the robins are late but are definitely setting up housekeeping. Life is very good.

    • I agree that Patrick is a great name. One thing about St. Patrick that I am very fond of is the powerful and beautiful hymn I Bind Unto Myself Today, supposedly written by the saint himself. This verse is my favourite:

      I bind unto myself today
      the virtues of the starlit heaven
      the glorious sun’s life-giving ray,
      the whiteness of the moon at even,
      the flashing of the lightning free,
      the whirling wind’s tempestuous shocks,
      the stable earth, the deep salt sea,
      around the old eternal rocks.

      It doesn’t get much better than that, hymn-wise…

  2. Thank you for mentioning my great great grandfather on St. Patrick’s day. He came to Canada knowing that he would never see his family again but started a new family here in Canada that still has ties to the area.

    • How wonderful to hear from you, Marilyn! It’s a thrill to have a descendant of our village’s founder here at Meanwhile, at the Manse. Are you the keeper of the Thompson family history? Hey, one day late – a very happy St. Patrick’s Day to you!

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