Ringing In The New Year

Literally. My ears are still ringing, over how they normally do, since Saturday night! Happy New Year, all. And with the turning of the calendar came a turn in the weather. It’s super cold and probably high time, too, considering it is winter.

Like the past few years we spent New Year’s in Philadelphia, first ushering in 2012 dancing the night away and completing the celebration watching the Mummer’s Parade the next day. But the previous night’s party didn’t go off without a hitch. When we finally arrived at our hotel and parked, which is always an exercise in tolerance, dealing with probably the least “lovable” brothers in all of Philly–the parking attendants, I discovered I didn’t have any money or my wallet, which also translated into no ID. I immediately wondered how long it would take to get a train for home and back because I knew where we were going we’d be carded to get in. I know I’m 51, and it’s flattering when some people say they don’t believe it, that I couldn’t possibly be a day over…50–they don’t see me oftentimes getting up from my comfy chair grimacing in pain and walking bent over in unnatural positions at least I get to the other end of the room–but with some finessing on Ariel’s part earlier in the day with one of the security guards on duty and later my just walking past all the checkpoints with a sort of sheepish defiant look, I was in and the party commenced. To jump ahead to the next day, later in the afternoon, we went back there and they were still carding and the line stretched for a distance down the sidewalk, but another “doorman” at another door, saw us approaching and he just let us in…ahead of the line.

The day of the parade was a meteorological anomaly. Mid-50’s and two layers of sweater were enough against a slightly chilled air, especially after the sun made it to the other side of the street and cast our side into shade. But at that point, since there was an unnatural lull in the parade we left to get some wings and afterwards went to chat up our bartender of the weekend for a while and headed back to where the doorman let us in ahead of the line.

For the first time in I don’t know how many years, we secured ourselves a prime spot along the parade route, right up against the barrier at the edge of the curb. But it was an odd time during the parade because there were unnatural spaces between groups, plus we came in at the tail end of the comic brigades and the beginning of the string bands; one or two of each we managed to see plus a few straggler Mummers or standalones. The highlight however, during one of the lulls was 16 month old Sophia marching down the street with her father. I only took the picture because it was the most adorable thing and learned her name in the paper the next morning because at it turns out, the little sunflower was deemed the darling of the parade.

This video is mine, taken with my phone. I had to upload it to YouTube in order to post it here.  And the picture of Sophia Sunflower also taken with my phone from across the street. I tried to get a better shot, but a Mummer came and stood right in front of me making time with the woman standing next to me and got in my way.

Now it’s back to the real world. See you next time.

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