I met him in a pub called “The Craic”.
The bar itself was sleek and modern. Leather love seats and huge mirrored walls whispered to patrons as soon as they walked in: “Your beer is going to be $12, so drink it slowly.” Nothing about the bar felt particularly Irish at all.
The flocks of Colleen’s and Padraig’s fleeing from the rain and into the Craic’s dimly lit quartets, however, were delightfully authentic. I would have been able to pick them out anywhere: the girls with their high hair and higher heels, the boys with their football shoulders and armies of freckles marching clear into their hairlines. The sweet lilt of Dublin mixed with the incomprehensible muttering of Tyrone and for a minute, I considered quitting drinking all together and putting the money instead towards a trip home - but then something caught my eye.
There it was, it’s cheek pressed miserably against the sticky bar ceiling: a shiny, gold cellophane balloon shaped like a 3. “Ah” I said a little too loud, “some poor sucker must be turning 30. Another good one gone too soon.”
I climbed atop the loveseat, teetering on my stilettos and reaching for the elusive 3, deigning it my treasure and yes, in my beer-addled mind cheered, my destiny! Shiny, mine! 3, mine! Stretch! Almost there! Just four more feet above my head!
And then, just like that, it was in my hands. My prized 3, clutched against my rapidly beating heart. Did I really just do that? Was this the true power of girl power? Can I do anything I set my mind to?
“You’re welcome”, laughed a cocky Leprechaun from somewhere above me.
An impossibly tall Irish man, stood next to me, the real retriever of my beloved 3. I craned my head to get a good look at him in the dark pub.