Last Friday I went to a 21st birthday party. No, I'm not going through some 1/3 life crisis and hanging out with 21 year olds - have a connection to the family.
From what I've been told, the 21st birthday is celebrated here with a party the size of a wedding reception. It is normal that 100-200 people would attend. I think for my 21st my friends and I did shots at some bar on The Strip in Lafayette. I was lucky as Louisiana didn't increase the drinking age to 21 until the year that I turned 21. Slid right in there.
For a 21st, the party was impressive. Had to pay for drinks, but I never bought one myself so that was ok. :)
The best thing for me was that it was pure Irish tradition. Not the leprechaun-Irish dancing kind of tradition. Apparently the tradition for the 21st includes a stripper. Those are pretty much standard in any country. Big muscular/greasy guy in a thong with his socks on dancing all over the girl who's sitting in a chair. The difference with their tradition is that it seems the birthday girl's friends give the stripper embarrassing stories about the girl to tell the entire room. Hmmm... may take that out if it were MY 21st.
Drank til 2:00, met loads of family members (here's me mom's sister, here's me mom's other sister, and another, and so on), and did my best to understand all of the conversations.
I think the actual birthday girl ended up with €2,000 from birthday cards - not too shabby when you're 21 - or when you're 30something!!