By Garry Ahern

It was a crisp and sunny along the cliffside walk, where the waters of the Irish Sea sparkled brightly below. The pathway was busy with scores of walkers, young and not-so-young, all making the most of this beautiful early Spring morning. A remark made by one of three people who were chatting, just ahead, drifted back in the clear air.

“And what’s Brigid doing now?” was the question posed. To this inadvertent eavesdropper, the question seemed a highly pertinent one. What indeed could Brigid be up to nowadays, she who’s official feast day of February 1st, had heralded the coming of Spring just a few days earlier?

While it transpired that the question related to a living and breathing mutual acquaintance of the three walkers, and not to the legendary Brigid of Kildare, it did get me thinking. Incredibly, over fifteen centuries after her death, that Brigid is still exerting her influence in different ways in Ireland.

This happened to be the first annual February Bank Holiday Monday, named in honour of Saint Brigid. The whole country was enjoying a new free day in her name, whether having a long lie-in, or greeting Spring in the great outdoors, like all of us on the cliff walk were doing this morning, and as, perhaps, Brigid herself had once done.

Continue reading in this week’s Ireland’s Own