When I was growing up in Ireland in the ’80s, St. Patrick’s Day meant two things: a day off school and a break from Lenten abstinence.
Back then, most Irish kids were expected to give up chocolate, or potato chips, or even all types of candy for Lent. It was always a struggle for a sweet tooth like me, but on Paddy’s Day (never, ever say “Patty’s Day” to an Irish-born person), all could be forgiven. Chocolate for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It was like a halftime break in the slog of Lent.
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