I Love a Parade

Today was the day for parades.  The town closest to us and those all around us had their parades today.  It made me smile to see several of my non-local friends talking on Facebook about their local parades today too.  I wonder if there is a National Christmas Parade Day in the works.  If so, I think the first Saturday in December is it.

This wasn’t something we planned ahead.  Actually we waited until the last minute to decide to go.  We left our house several minutes after it started, arrived towards the end of the route thirty minutes after it began, and still had a few minutes before the beginning of the parade was in sight.  I like it.

My crew headed to our spot towards the end of the parade.  Love watching it from this spot.
My crew headed to our spot towards the end of the parade route. Love watching it from this spot.

How fun it was to see the faces of the children in the parade–some of them experiencing it for the very first time!  The little elementary school Snowball Queen waving her hand like a Princess is taught to was just too precious.  The two boy dance team inspired me with their bravery and confidence.  Aub’s friend who continued keeping time marching with his ROTC group though we were waving and taking pictures the whole time his group went by.  The people on both sides of the road waving and clapping with respect as the members of the USAF marched by.  The young man who teaches at Cherished Children singing as he walked alongside their float.  I think theirs was my favorite float of all.

I worried over the little ones who were a part of their school’s group and had to walk when other schools had floats for their groups.  I worried about fairness and financing and wanted those children to be okay walking that whole long route.  Aub worried about all of those folks having a ride back to their cars parked way back at the beginning point.  My littles loved waving at the people walking and on floats and cars.  It was a virtual waving fest. Anyone not knowing what was happening would have thought we were all quite friendly.  And for a brief time we all were.  Aub and Cooter, my little guy, hid when the Shriner clown and Ronald McDonald went by.  Coulrophobics.  But everyone’s day was made, especially my littles’, when the guy in the red suit came walking up and high-fived the two of them.  They were both starstruck and speechless.

Yeah.

Darth Vader.

In his red mask and cape for the holiday.

Yes y’all, the legend from the Dark Side took top billing with my little people.

At a Christmas parade.

And I’m okay with that.  I am thankful that someone (who knows if he was even an official part of the parade) decided to show up, dressed in red and delighted the children who waited to catch a glimpse of the other guy in a red suit riding on the back of a truck.  That was very cool.  The littles are still talking about him.  And wondering who will show up next year.  Cooter hopes it’s Han.  I think Aub might hope so too–just for different reasons.

I am glad I decided to go.  I didn’t have it in my heart to go two years ago, still reeling from Daddy’s absence.  Last year I was involved in a Fair Trade day so I didn’t get to go then either.  It was time for me to go, and I was happy myself to stand out in the cold on this dreary, not quite raining day and watch and wait to see the guy in the red suit.  And that fabulous woman sitting beside him.

No, not Darth and daughter Leia.

Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Santa and Mrs. Claus with all the reindeer.  Cooter asked where the real reindeer were, including Rudolph.  Resting up for their long trip in two and a half weeks of course!
Santa and Mrs. Claus with all the reindeer. Cooter asked where the real reindeer were, including Rudolph. Resting up for their long trip in two and a half weeks of course!

Taking the lead from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, the arrival of Santa signified the end of the parade and the beginning of the holiday season.

The littles were almost as excited to see Santa as they had been to see the red-caped Darth Vader.  It's where we live folks.  Star Wars-ville.
The littles were almost as excited to see Santa as they had been to see the red-caped Darth Vader. It’s where we live folks. Star Wars-ville.

While I don’t know what this Christmas will look like for all of us–we are still figuring it out–I am thankful for the parade and the simple joy of being there.  I found myself humming along to the Christmas tunes on the radio and looking forward to getting the tree up and decorated.  (It’s a slow process around here–this whole decorating thing.)  And then the whole afternoon, the song kept going through my head–well, to be honest, it was just the one line–I don’t know the rest of the words.  “I…..love a parade!”

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