Céad míle fáilte! (A hundred thousand welcomes!)
Lá Fhéile Pádraig! (Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!)
Monday is Saint Patrick’s Day, and I don’t know about you, but I, for one, am in major need of some craic — and I plan on having some the whole day long! 😉
If you don’t know what craic is, check out http://www.ireland-fun-facts.com/craic.html for an interesting and entertaining discussion by Elaine Walsh that expands on the following definition she provides:
First things first: It’s pronounced “crack.”
“Let’s go have some craic” is the youthful cry each Saturday evening the length and breadth of the Emerald Isle.
“The craic was ninety on the Isle of Man,” warbles Christy Moore in a well-known ditty (ninety = mighty).
“What is this craic and why is everybody having it or looking for it?” visitors to Ireland often ask with raised eyebrows (their tone suggesting that the entire Irish population should get to a detox clinic as soon as possible).
Craic is a Gaelic word, with no exact English translation. The closest you get is “fun.” There’s the expression “ceoil agus craic,” meaning “music and fun,” probably once used by locals to fortify themselves before heading off over an arduous mountain pass to the nearest ceili. Craic doesn’t appear in standard English dictionaries, but enter it as a search term on Google, and 42,500 listings come up. There’s obviously a lot of craic out there.
Put simply, having craic is having a good time or a laugh. However, due to an unfortunate similarity in pronunciation with a well-known and illegal narcotic substance, not everyone gets the right idea about it. Apocryphal stories abound of unlucky Irish travellers who have had their innocent search for craic misinterpreted. In one well-known example from Paris, two Irish lads saunter down the boulevard, musing out loud on what to do and good places to find some craic. Their plans for the evening are, somewhat naturellement, misunderstood by a nearby eavesdropping gendarme.
“Looking for ze crack, mais non,” cries the gendarme before slapping handcuffs on the unfortunate pair and whisking them off to the nearest Parisian police station where, needless to say, they do not encounter much craic that particular evening.
While I always enjoy looking for some reason to celebrate — grab every holiday you can, says I, and maybe even make up one or two when need be! 😉 — my life has been pretty stressful lately:
First, we learned our shingles were badly worn and so we were in need of a new roof. After investigating our options, we decided a tin roof would be the way to go — and given the extended warranty on colored tin roofs, we decided to go with a color.
So then, my beloved decided that before we had the roof put on, it would behoove us to do a long-put-off renovation to the laundry room (Operation Laundry Room), which, due to limited storage space (as hubby says, one really should describe our home as a bungalow 😉 LOL), would mean chaos in the rest of the house until Operation Laundry Room was done.
During the process of Op Laundry Room (which involves redoing the roof in that room), two new, but very small, leaks appeared with the new roof. The tin roof would repair this issue, so we were faced with spending more time and money in tracking down and repairing these small leaks, or halting Op Laundry Room until the tin roof was put on. *sigh*
So, chaos has continued.
Then, on the 27th of February, my beloved decided to cut down a tree limb that had been worrying him. I was assisting. Unfortunately, though, things did not go according to plan — the limb knocked the ladder away from my husband and he fell approximately 15 feet, give or take.
After a call to 911, the paramedics determined he required a helicopter ride to the hospital. After a CATSCAN and an MRI, the determination was a compression fracture of his T12 vertebrae.
The upper three regions comprise the remaining 24, and are grouped under the the following names:
- Cervical: 7 vertebrae, designated C1 through C7 in order from closest to the skull to furthest from it; the vertebrae of the neck
- Thoracic: the next 12 vertebrae, designated T1 or Th1 through T12 or Th12; the vertebrae of the rib cage and chest
- Lumbar: the last 5 individual vertebrae, designated L1 through L5, the vertebrae of the lower back above the pelvis
After 3 nights in the hospital — two in the Trauma ICU — my beloved was sent home with a back brace, which he will likely have to wear for 8 to 12 weeks (2 or 3 months), give or take. His activity must be limited, of course, while his spine heals, and things have been hectic for me as I work to look after him, do my chores as well as his, and keep our business going.
We did get our new roof installed this past Wednesday and Thursday (Polar roof with Charcoal trim), so we do have that item ticked off our list, and now that he’s home, my beloved is expressing an incredibly upbeat attitude and is, overall, doing quite well! 🙂
So we’re looking forward to a craic-filled day on Monday! How will you be celebrating?
You could have Irish Buttermilk Pancakes for breakfast:
And for lunch, maybe do a Pub Lunch with some Cream of Cauliflower Soup with Crab (Vegetarians — just leave out the crab!): https://thatsmellsyummy.wordpress.com/2012/03/20/meet-me-at-the-pub/
And, of course, there is always delicious Fish and Chips:
Here in the U.S., we often like to celebrate with Corned Beef and Cabbage:
Which I have learned is even yummier if you cook Corned Beef and Cabbage with Guinness!:
Irish Soda Bread makes a yummy accompaniment:
And if you want a green but sugar-free dessert, whip up a Triple Layer Pistachio Pie:
However you commemorate Saint Patrick’s Day, I wish you a craic-filled day!
Now that my beloved is home and recovering, I can deal with the chaos, Operation Laundry Room, and everything else — yes, it’s stressful sometimes, but I’m so thankful to have him home.
IF you want to, like “That Smells Yummy!” on FaceBook for more fun!