Saturday, April 26, 2008

I love a Parade!

Every small town has it's own personal parade. It may be the Fall Festival Parade, the Santa Claus Parade, the 4th of July Parade or maybe in a coastal town, a Boat Parade. In our small town of Eureka, CA we have the Rhododendron Festival Parade. Rhododendrons and azaleas grow wild in the Redwood Forest and Eureka celebrates this noble bush the end of April every year.

Bill and I invited 3 year old Sydney to the parade a few days ago. Even though she's shy, she proudly has announced to one and all, "I'm going to the parade with Grandma and Grandpa!" I'm not sure she remembers the parade last year, or was really sure what she'd signed on for, but if Grandpa and Grandma were in and she got to ride in her wagon, it must be something great.

The weather was perfect! Sunny and warmish (it"s never hot here in Eureka, warmish is all you can ever hope for and the good Lord delivered!), we found the perfect corner, set up the dual "couch" chair for the old folks and Sydney set up in her wagon. We sang songs, watched a jet bound for Europe zip by, saw a tow truck and a helicopter (two things that thoroughly excite this 3 year-old) and after about 1/2 hour we heard the siren of the lead vehicle. A Police Car! Soon followed by the color guard and the American Flag. We stood and clapped for the flag and the Korean War Vets, thanking them for their service. A very nice lady from the Covenant Church came by and gave Sydney an orange balloon.

Small town parades are pretty predictable....there were fire engines, the kids on bicycles with rhododendron blossoms taped to their spokes, the Shriners and their band and guys in fez hats driving tiny cars, the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, the political candidates in convertibles, marching bands, clowns, horses, the swim team and many local businesses. Some threw candy, some passed out toys, a local Indian Casino passed out used decks of cards! By the end Sydney had a plastic cup (from the Coast Guard) filled with candy, whistles, toys and such. Truth be told, I watched Syd more than I watched the parade. The delight and wonder on her face was far more interesting to me than another flatbed trailer with bales of straw and wilting flowers.... Another day in the life of this grandma!

1 comment:

The Hachés said...

How fun! I miss the rhododendrons!!!