In an old schoolhouse in north Donegal people gather to grant St Brigid permission to cross the threshold. She carries an armful of freshly cut rushes with a white cloth tied around them. They are laid on a long set of tables, and slowly men, women and children go up gather some rushes up to make the traditional St Brigid's crosses. There are a number of cross styles.
This all takes place on the eve of Lá Fhéile Bríde or St Brigid's Day, which falls on February 1st each year.
This was originally a pagan custom, which was Christianised. Imbolc was it's old pagan name and marked the the beginning of Spring.
This is a localised tradition. Here, in the old schoolhouse, all ages of the community gather to chat, make crosses, passing on skills and a culture that has deep roots. Children run around, dipping their hands in the tin of chocolates, allowed to stay up late. A huge pot of spuds is boiled, mashed with an old wooden potato ponder with scallions and salt added, maybe a drop of milk and when it's served on the plate a well is made for the great dollop of butter. Yum, yum.
Go raibh míle maith agaibh Mandy agus Donnelly, agus gach duine eile a raibh ann. Bhí an oíche an galánta ar fad.
Running time 15 minutes.