Instead of heading down the pub for a few holiday scoops at lunchtime, I decided to shoot over to the end of the New York St. Patrick's Day parade on 88th and fifth to take a few pics.

I positioned myself strategically at the very end of the parade, as I only had an hour to get back to the computer before my IrishCentral collar started to emit electric shocks throughout my body.

But the risk or electrocution was worth it to get a glimpse of the tail end of the 2010 St Patrick’s Day parade.

Manhattan College was just wrapping up when I arrived. How these men and women of all ages walked from 44th all the way up to 88th under the blaring sun in Aran sweaters is beyond me.

I’d be drowning in sweat. They braved it all with a smile, but you can imagine the relief of getting that fabric, which can sometimes itch sensitive skin, off the body.

Still dancing and still smiling after 40 blocks were the young ladies from the Irish Music Dancing Association of North America.

Just about able to follow them were the young ladies’ proud parents, some of whom looked like they needed a good rest after the day’s exertion.

Watching it all was an enthusiastic and appreciate crowd. Irish jerseys of all ilk were present. Rugby, soccer and of course GAA, ( how people have preserved some of the relic jerseys I saw is amazing!) but almost everyone sported one of the 40 shades, and the day was all the more colorful for it.

With each band and association, from Offaly pride to the Piper band of the Port Authority of NY/NJ, pride, happiness and exhaustion were evident in equal measures.

By this time, the IrishCentral collar sent out its warning jolt, and I had to start back to my post.

The people I witnessed who marched, played and supported all looked like they were having a great time in the St. Patrick’s Day sunshine.

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all.

Gallery / New York City Saint Patrick's Day parade photos / Click here