Grand Rapids, Michigan

East Grand Rapids, Michigan

A view from my St. Patrick’s Day celebration, at Derby Station, a pub in East Grand Rapids. Above you see the headless body of Conor Dugan, a longtime correspondent and sometime participant on this blog’s comment threads, and an actual Irish-American. In front of him is a dangerous nectar called Devil’s Milk. It’s got an alcohol content of 11 percent or thereabouts. I was able to try some later; one of you fine readers brought a gift of a six-pack of local beers to my reading. We got into them later, by my host’s wood stove, out in the snowy West Michigan countryside. I’m sorry I’m not able to be here longer; I had a great time, and met some wonderful people. I think this must be the only place outside of the Netherlands that I’ve ever spoken any Dutch. What a shame that this is the Land That Spring Forgot; I don’t know that the snow will ever melt here, but as long as they’ve got wooden stoves and great craft beer, they’ll be fine.