If you are going to the crazy new pizza joint or riding the buses or attending a Taco Tuesday, no matter where you go in Pacific Beach this summer, Gaelic accents can be heard.
“I have to say, it is almost impossible now to get a visa for three months to come over here,” explained Victoria Brennan, a subtly freckled 21-year old with rosy cheeks. “I’m only after a three-month vacation, but it is necessary to book arrangements with a travel agency that specializes in this sort of thing.”
Brennan said that when she inquired of her travel agent how many Irish students would be going to Pacific Beach this summer, she was told over 1600.
The majority of the visiting Irish are female, and although there are those who complain about the seasonal influx of “Zonies,” there is little for the surfers to complain about when it comes to these temporary emigrants. After just a few days, they often appear with reddened paper-white skin.
“For the love of God, it was overcast in La Jolla, so I did not expect to get such a sunburn on one side,” Erin Braden laughed as she spun around while waiting for the roller coaster in Mission Beach. “My three closest girls and I have been to TJ, a baseball game, the Gaslamp, and a bus trip to L.A. Believe it or not, the baseball game was only half full."
The American phrase “born and raised here” offered a particularly comedic amusement to the gang of girls, so they repeated it often. Mid-day, the Irish lads play sports such as Gaelic football (definitely not soccer) then swarm McD’s for a feast of chips and pressed and formed chicken parts…when they leave, the tables are completely covered with wrappers and cups.
At a coffee shop, while planning a trip to San Francisco with her three “best girls,” Ciara Callahan said that she “stayed in PB last year, so she is the unofficial guide.” None in her group has to work; the ones that do, manage to find part-time employment…even without a vehicle or a phone (kind of illustrates how unmotivated my American friends are).
The visitors who are under 21 find plenty of activities in the evening at hookah bars and at the beach. In general, the guys are firm and white and the girls are less firm and are paper-white, making them easy to spot.
“Over the years, I have observed that less and less of the young SoCal girls have feminine, soft voices," said Josh, a bartender. "For the most part, it is even more uncommon that Irish girls have feminine voices. Cute as get-out voices, but far from soft, charming, and delicate — ha….
"Last night, an Irish girl was projectile-vomited on by a guy from India. He left. She closed the bar, all the while approaching every guy in the place: 'I got vomited on, but HEY! I got a free shot!'"