Well today is St. Patrick’s Day again which means Irish people and those that appreciate “the craic” will be drinking to excess in celebration of the good saint himself, or something like that. For those of a more sober disposition (which admittedly is very few on this day) what better way to celebrate your inner irishness than by learning the ancient Gaelic language?
Nowadays you do not have to actually live in a Gaeltacht region (parts of Ireland where Irish is officially the first language) to learn to speak irish, which is fortunate since most of us don’t! In fact only about 130,000 people are native speakers these days but there are well over a million people who speak it to some degree so there is in fact a good chance you’ll find someone else to chat with if you do learn it, at least on St. Patrick’s Day.
The internet as usual provides many places to dabble and improve your conversational language skills, with language exchanges for example. Luckily the industrious language company Pimsleur have also got us covered with their Pimsleur Irish audio course.
Even more luckily it is available in digital format which means if you’re quick (really quick!) you could buy it right now from Amazon and download it straight away then run through the first few lessons before heading to your local Irish pub where you can win friends and influence people, or at least impress them, with your mighty command of the language – that should surely win you some free (and possibly green) beers!