Scotland and Ireland have a long shared history, going back to the days of Dál Riata and the Gaelic kingdom covering much of modern County Antrim and a large chunk of the West of Scotland. Indeed the Scots, as opposed to the Picts, came from the North of Ireland, when Scotia meant Ireland rather than Scotland, so I guess it is no surprise that the Scots and Irish have a strong affinity for each other and share many cultural traits. I imagine then that everyone and his uncle will be expecting me to celebrate St Patrick's Day with all the vim and vigour that many have come to expect of this particular day, especially given the possibility that St Patrick came from Scotland, specifically near the town of Dumbarton.
Then again, and I say this as a self professed Hibernophile, I won't be going out of my way to wear green, eat corned beef and cabbage, drink a trough full of Guinness or start wishing all and sundry "top of the morning", or engage in any other "traditional" activities. Why ever not I hear my slightly less curmudgeonly friends ask? Simply put, despite my affection for our Gaelic cousins to the south, I am not Irish and would feel like a cultural interloper. Not to mention that, having studied theology and read the writings of St Patrick, a fairly quick read really, it is difficult to put St Patrick and drunken revelry in the same bracket for me, just as St Valentine's Day, Easter and Christmas have been debased in the name of commercialism.
Before I sound like a total miserable sod, I would like to wish my Irish readers a very happy St Patrick's Day, with plenty of good craft beer, great music and healthy craic (a word quite possibly originating from Scots) in the pub.