Hawthorn's Ramblings

Friday, March 23, 2007

Springtime in Ireland - and CRICKET!

Ireland has at last had some nice springtime weather, nothing warm mind you, but these past few days a little milder. Birds are beginning to sing and trees appearing even greener! Tourists are becoming more visible, and many choose Springtime for their holiday vacation to Ireland, availing of cheaper travel and accomodation.

Recent major events included Ireland beating England in rugby and Croke Park. This was a very historic occasion, as Croke Park is the home of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) and only gaelic games (hurling, camogie, football) have been played there till now. There was a certain amount of opposition to the playing of "God Save The Queen" as in 1922 British forces invaded the pitch during a football game and opened fire, killing 22 people including 1 player, Michael Hogan.

However the occasion was magnificent this time, with the 75,000 crowd warmly welcoming the English team, and giving a silent respect to the English anthem. The singing of the Irish anthem, Amhrain na Bhfiann, was a moving experience in itself, and TV cameras showed tears on the faces of several Irish players. But the final tears were for the English fans, as Ireland won 43-13.

CRICKET, yes cricket!! When people heard that Ireland had beaten fancied Pakistan in the world cup, most only then realized that (1) there WAS a world cup in cricket, (2) Ireland were in it! and (3) Ireland actually had a cricket team...!! But yes, we have and it was a famous victory, overshadowed by the horrific murder of the Pakistan coach after the game.

I will lave it at that for the moment. More later about some coming attractions and concerts in Ireland this summer.

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