St. Patrick was not Irish, but British born in the early fifth century to a wealthy family, but he ended up being captured by Irish raiders at his family home and taken back to Ireland as a slave in his teenage years. He worked as a shepherd in a very lonely existence for nearly six years before escaping. His lonely and fearful existence resulted in his accepting the Christian faith and he returned to Britain where he trained as a priest and was sent as a missionary back to Ireland. His duty was to minister to the small contingent of Christians on the island while working to convert the pagan majority of natives to the faith and he was very successful. Hence, he became known as the principal Patron Saint of Ireland although he was never officially canonized since that was not yet the practice of the Catholic Church in far-away places in those times. Over time, his good works resulted in folklore and myths being created to further his reputation and many of those became legend, though not in actuality true, one of which was the story of his removing snakes from the island which was, indeed, false. But good works and a positive influence of a great devotee of the Good was a common basis for myths of greatness in those days as people who led a tough and turbulent life always needed a positive influence to give them hope for the future. St. Patrick was the perfect person to do just that.
So, isn't it natural that the Irish, a people who have suffered many hardships but still stand tall with a jovial nature, would come up with St. Patty's Day, actually commemorating the day that good St. Patrick died, to celebrate with good food, good drink and music and laughter? Well, that's just what they did and today it is a special day here in the United States as well. All Americans, not just those of Irish ancestry, have enjoyed this day for generations. And even though on this year the celebration is more somber and smaller than in normal years, it's still a good time to celebrate the Irish and their day. After all, we all need something bright to brighten our spirits and lift our mood. Leave it to the Irish to provide that. And while it has been said for many years the people of my background, I'm Scottish, and the Irish have traditionally not gotten along. I say to that Balderdash! For, after all, my descendants and the Irish were likely at odds for they had too much in common. They were stubborn and they loved to fight but, then again, they also liked to party, so they buried the hatchet to enjoy a pint or two. Isn't that a much easier way to get along than most? Enjoy the day.