So, this is my first St. Patrick’s Day where I won’t be celebrating my Irish heritage.
It’s not that I have anything against St. Patrick’s Day (the second worst amateur hour drinkfest behind New Year’s eve).
It’s just that it turns out, I’m not Irish.
After my mother died a few years ago one of my brothers began to fiddle around on Ancestry.com, tracing back our lineage. We knew that my mother’s family roots were German. Both her mother and father lay claim to that heritage.
For decades, however, we were under the assumption that the Fraley family had it’s roots firmly on the Emerald Isle.
Not so much.
The cool thing is my brother discovered we a descendants of a Revolutionary War veteran. (We have relatives that fought on both sides of the Civil War, too). However, that veteran came to the Colonies from Germany, not from Ireland.
So there you go.
One very revealing fact from my brother’s research: We may be related to both the Hatfields and the McCoy’s, which would explain a lot. Anyone who’s been at a family picnic or Christmas party will understand what I mean.
So, I’m actually as Irish as green beer and Lucky Charms cereal. Which is to say, not at all.
No offense to my kraut ancestors, but it does leave me a little bummed.
May have to raise a pint of Guinness later to commiserate.
An old Irish pal o mine, with whom I’ve sung Danny Boy a time or two on March Seventeenths past, tells me not to despair.
“You got this wrong, my friend. On St. Patrick’s Day, “Irish” is an attitude, not an ancestral celebration! On this day, everyone is Irish who wants to celebrate the onset of spring and the weakened state of British oppression!”
That helps. A little.