Last Sunday morning I had just dressed to go to church when Ms. Candi and Antione, her young son, walked by my front door and asked if I was going to go watch the parade. The big Independence Day parade features the all the schools in town who wish to participate.
I quickly changed to some more comfortable clothing, grabbed my camera, and walked down to the post office. Trying to make a little conversation while waiting for the parade to start, I asked Ms Candi if the Friends School had ever participated in the parade. She laughed that little laugh that some of you know well and said, “Yes, I passed out. We haven’t participated since.”
Me, “You passed out?”
Candi, “Yes. You are expected to be at the staging area at 8:00 in the morning for a parade that is supposed to start at 9:00 but doesn’t start until 10:00. You are not allowed to have umbrellas or hats or bottles of water. I passed out.”
Following that enlightening conversation, I noticed that the battery on my camera was dying a quick death, so I asked how long it would be until the parade started. Candi said 15 minutes. I was sure that I could make it home and back in 15 minutes so I walked home quickly, changed batteries and started back.
I was still about a block away on my return when I heard the drummers start and saw the first marchers pass the intersection. I didn’t try to get back to where I was, I just got close enough to get some photos and, hopefully, get a sense of the parade.
A lot of schools participate and most of the parade is populated with school children of all ages from young elementary to 6th form (Jr college). It was fun to see that some schools had practiced marching and their students were walking in step and in straight lines. Some schools had not practiced quite so much.
After a while I noticed that the parade of students was coming to a close and that they were going to be followed by large trucks carrying musicians and really big banks of speakers putting out very loud music. I decided that was enough parade for one day.
PS. Can you read the t-shirts on the guys on this last float?