Had a fetching four days with Michelle's brother and sister, Dave and Sue, up in the Panhandle.
With Mardi Gras in full swing along the Gulf--and after a morning gumbo cook-off in Mexico Beach--we took in the parade at nearby Panama City. Now, altho some of the wildly dressed float folks fling out faux coins, candy and Moon Pies, 19 out of 20 hurl beads--red beads, blue beads, green beads, purple beads, big beads, small beads, flower-shaped beads, lobster-shaped beads, fish-shaped beads . . . and a lot of 'em. And, since we were stationed toward the end of the parade route, and since there were two very attractive women beseeching the float flingers, we ended up with ten pounds--and maybe ten cents worth--of beads. There were so many beads around their necks, in fact, that Michelle and Sue appeared to be wearing colorful horse collars when the day was done.
Note #1: I have been to several Mardi Gras parades in various towns, including the Big Tuna in New Orleans. If parents w/li'l chillun want to experience the fun and color w/o the nudity and drunkenness, I strongly advise virtually any small town parade from Pascagoula to Panama.
Note #2: Which is not to say that many locals don't get fritzed even in the small parades. I noticed one woman along the parade route stepping from a nearby trailer house pretty stewed. From the weathered look of this reveler, I engage that most any day of her life is a bacchanal of some sort.
Note #3: Now, just because a string of plastic beads weigh only an ounce or two, never assume that you can turn your head on them. Hurled at your coconut from thirty feet away even ounces can smite like pounds. No, one must stay alert or they can catch it like I saw one tubby old guy catch it. The poor fellow bent over to pick up something and when he popped up again a mess of blazing beads smacked him upside the noggin at 90 MPH, then whapped around his puss like a whip, nearly knocking his glasses off. Altho he managed a weak smile, when I looked over later I noted a row of red welts on his forehead.
Scary Clown of the Day