Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Throw me something, mister!

“Mardi Gras is in our soul.”
-Kim Priez

On Saturday after Poppy's funeral, the grandkids had to get out of the house. Too many tears. Too much time indoors. Too many almost relatives. Too many stories heard too many times. Our times together are never long enough. So despite the sad circumstances, we were determined to enjoy our time together, too.

With Mardi Gras just a couple of days away, one of the annual parades was planned for Saturday evening. We parked the car about half a mile from the parade route, and walked the rest of the way. We had two Mardi Gras newbies in the group, so we were determined to do Mardi Gras right. We strolled the street looking for familiar faces. However, the sun had already set, so instead of friends and former classmates, we only found irritating high schoolers and disgusting white trash.

We turned around and headed back the least crowded spot we had seen, in front of a house up for sale. We stood around for awhile, hoping that it wouldn't be too long until the parade wound its way around to Kings Highway. I mean, it was a chilly night, and we really hadn't wrapped ourselves in enough layers.

Just as we could hear the sirens and see the flashing lights of the police cars clearing the streets, a voice called out, "Hey Callie!" Across the street, our good family friends, three generations of the Parker clan, were gathered. We hurried across the street to greet them.

Parade began. Floats passed. Tow trucks blared. Music blasted. Beads flew. Arms waved. Children danced. Bags were filled. Necks were decorated. Photos were taken.

Afterwards we walked away agreeing that just like Christmas, Mardi Gras is much better with little kids around. You could catch the beads in the air, and then throw them on the ground, excitely yelling, "Look, Raina! Look! There's beads on the ground! Get them! Get them!!"

Let's just say no one walked away empty handed. Only at Mardi Gras are you willing to dive in the street to pick up a string of plastic beads lying in the dirt and then hang them around your neck!


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