Friday, August 6, 2010

Parading About

Yesterday I was afraid of lightening induced wildfires. Today I'm afraid to look in the newspaper. I've done something totally out of character and I fear there may be photographic evidence. Published photographic evidence. Sometimes I wonder how I get myself into these situations. For someone who takes pride in her Elusive Laurie persona, this behavior was way, way out there.

I took part in a parade. Talk about being out of my comfort zone, but in an attempt to get break free from the inertia that has stilled me for months, I am making an effort to try new things.

This wasn't my first parade. In the late 80's I took part in Windsor's Canada Day Parade. I carried a banner identifying our local MP's. When I agreed to the gig I didn't realize that my duties included politician herding. My gregarious gaggle of vote seekers couldn't overcome their natural instinct to shake every hand and kiss every baby on the parade route. Their antics caused us to fall behind, yet I was the one the parade officials hounded for holding up the parade!

So how did I manage to get involved in another parade? The topic came up a few weeks ago when I was shopping at Brambles. Angeline asked what hubby and I were doing on BC Day. I must admit that there was a split second when I expected an invitation to a barbeque or beach party. The parade request was so surprising that I agreed without thinking. Then I did my best not to think about it again until the morning of the event. I was concerned that if I let myself dwell on it I'd talk myself out of it.

My duties for this parade were straight forward. I walked alongside the Brambles float and gave colouring contest sheets to kids (and one flirty senior) along the parade route. I didn't have to worry about holding up the parade this time. If I dawdled along handing out sheets, the rest of the parade just whizzed on by. Seriously, I've never witnessed such a brisk parade in my life. Fortunately, Angeline provided matching red t-shirts for the Brambles crew, so it wasn't hard to find the rest of the team when I fell behind.

Angeline, James and their group of handy helpers did an outstanding job with the float. With only a pickup truck and a trailer for their platform they were able to highlight BC food from the farm to the table. The truck bed was the farm, with straw bales, an antique plow and other farm-type accoutrements. The back of the trailer was the table, featuring a bistro set complete with dishes and flowers. Let me tell you, having a set table on a moving float requires some very creative use of tape.

At the front of the trailer, between the farm and the table, was the shop bringing the two together. This, of course, was the heart of the float complete with baskets of produce and a mini meat counter decorated with pantyhose sausages and rubber chickens. Mmmmm.

In spite of my initial what-have-I-gotten-myself-into reaction I had a great time. The weather was co-operative, the crew was fun and the crowd was appreciative. It was so nice to hear all the positive comments from the onlookers. James and Angeline are making a name for themselves, and I completely enjoyed being part of their team.








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