Are you wearing green?
I wore my green striped flats today.
Today is St. Patrick’s Day and there were parades to celebrate
in various parts of Japan, including Tokyo, today!
You might wonder why in the world we celebrate
St. Patrick’s Day in Japan.
Well, besides the fact that Japan loves Irish beer,
the Irish have made many contributions to Japan in the past.
I learned from the Irish Embassy website that the first record of
an Irish person setting foot in Japan was way back in 1704.
Also, in 1906 an Irish reverend, who was teaching at Keio Univesity,
brought the sport hockey into Japan by teaching his students how to play.
The Japanese university hockey league currently has
24 men’s teams and 16 women’s teams.
And did you know that the first version of our national anthem
was composed by an Irish bandmaster who trained brass bands by soldiers?
It’s not the national anthem we sing now
but still, that is a pretty big deal.
Oh, and we can’t forget the talented Irish architect
who designed the street plan for Ginza after the fire of 1872.
No wonder the streets of Ginza were so modern!
I really had no idea Japan and Ireland has so many connections.
I’ve always wanted to go to Ireland
to explore their rolling hills and beautiful scenery.
But learning about our history
makes me want to visit even more now!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!