South Boston holds a parade every St. Patrick’s Day. Drawing somewhere around 600,000 people each year, it’s known to experience troubles. Alcohol troubles. Also known as drunk people everywhere.
My sister was visiting the weekend of the parade and decided that sounded like a good time. She declared that we should go to the parade. And go we did…
The reports weren’t exaggerating about the size of this parade. When my sister and I took the T, it was incredibly crowded. I’ve never seen the subway that packed in my life:
Boston knows how crazy it gets on St. Patty’s Day, though, and had the foresight to increase train service that day. So we moved through the pack relatively quickly.
And when we finally reached our stop, we found that it was just as crazy as the T:
Southie is historically a working-class, Irish-American neighborhood also known for its long record of organized crime. In recent years, however, Southie has changed drastically: The Boston Redevelopment Authority targeted Southie for redevelopment and property values have increased. And certainly, the day of the parade, there was no signs of Southie’s turbulent history. Rather, there was
…and, of course, the elderly, kids, and their parents. But in a city that has tons of Irish-Americans, and tons of college kids, and tons of people who just want to party, what else can you expect on St. Patty’s Day? We passed by houses full of college parties, tons of people toting their open containers of beer, and plenty of bottles littered on the ground.
Because the parade has had problems with drunkenness before, the police were out in droves:
So my sister and I, along with my suitemate, were content to perch up on a hill to observe. Unfortunately, the T could only drop us off at the latter end of the parade. We ended up waiting two hours before the parade actually reached us, by which time we had to leave anyway. At least the weather was nice.
And we did manage to get a peek at some cool floats.
Although I think I’ve had my fill of bagpipes.
Though drunk people never get old.