St. Patrick's Day Parade

A few friends and I went out to draw the St. Patrick's Day Parade yesterday, despite the unwelcome return of winter. Even with the wind, it was great to be outside drawing. It was my first time seeing the parade, partially because of its discriminatory policies against gay groups, and partially because of my fear of the drunken masses, but I ended up enjoying myself very much. I am part Irish, after all! My favorite part, though was seeing all the people who came out to march and watch. (Also, I genuinely like the sound of bagpipe music).

The marchers were often very stoic and soldierly...

...while the onlookers were more boisterous.

I loved how excited everyone was to be there and show their Irish pride. We were uptown near the Metropolitan Museum, so it was a bit more of a classy affair than what happens down in Midtown.

There were too many bagpipes to count, but I still feel as though I have no idea what the actual shape of a bagpipe is. Maybe next year!

I love the way that immigrant communities in New York often retain their distinctness amidst the melting pot of the city. The people, even if they've been here for generations, often feel like they have retained a lot of that old world spirit. My favorite of the day was the lady in the upper right, determined and undeterred by the cold.