Sunday, February 16, 2020

Throw me sumthin' mister!!

Last night I went to my first and hopefully only parade this Mardi Gras season. The only reason we went was because we were invited to someone's house right on the parade route.  It was SO nice having a yard all to ourselves and access to a bathroom!!   I never thought there would be a time when I didn't care if we skipped the parades.  I only missed Mardi Gras once when I was a kid when I had pneumonia and was in the hospital.  Then again right after Valerie was born because she was just a few months old.  Before that, we went to almost all of the parades we could.  The parades here in Houma are actually pretty nice and not as crazy as things get in New Orleans.  Of course there are always a few incidents, but overall it's safe and good fun for everyone. 

Parades are very slow moving.  We were just a few blocks from the beginning and it took half an hour to reach us.  They roll well into the night and if something happens like a flat tire - and it does happen - it can delay things hours.

The kids had a blast hanging out with friends and thankfully didn't bring home an excessive amount of junk.

So welcome to the Mardi Gras!

The parade is always led by policeman on motorcycles.  They crisscross back and forth in the street ahead of the parade, and they are LOUD.

The first float is always krewe's royalty.  The King or Queen usually just waves and the pages (little kids)  toss small things or plastic cups into the crowd.  The next float is usually the maids. 

Then the real parade starts.  Some floats throw a lot, some are rather stingy.  I guess I would be too because it costs a small fortune to buy all the throws, then you just toss it all away!  A lot of riders like to tease the crowd with fancy beads or big stuffed animals.  They just hold it over the side of the float but never throw it. All the floats have their own sound systems.  Some are really REALLY loud.

They throw beads of course.  Toys also, like light up junk and hula hoops!  Bags of chips and even Little Debbie cakes.  You have to pay attention or you'll get smacked in the head by flying bags of beads.  And yes they hurt!

There are lots of walking groups in between floats.  Being in marching band also means marching at Mardi Gras.  Valerie gets a taste of her first Mardi Gras parade next weekend.  Next year they are supposed to be marching the big one - Rex, King of Carnival - in New Orleans.  I'm glad she isn't doing that one this year. 

Like I said, parades are slow moving so all of this can go on for hours.  Last night from start to finish we were out there for about 3 -4 hours. 

Once it's over, the street is full of trash!  And you get to go home with a bunch of clutter that will never be touched again.  At least until you give it away to a rider to throw again next year.


  1. I think having the advantage of watching the parade at a friend's house is the way to go! Going to parades when the kids were younger, it was always challenging trying to find a bathroom LOL and usually one or the other had to go sometime during the parade despite our best preparations. I was surprised when we started going to parades in Montana when we moved there that people threw things from the parade like candy, etc. That didn't happen with parades I had been to before then in Southern California.

    Looked like a relatively fun time for you and the girls!


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  3. Wow. They really ARE loud! I would have issues with all the garbage and waste too, but it does look like fun!

  4. I've never been to Mardi Gras. One of those things everyone should do at least once, right?

  5. I would love to experience Mardi Gras someday. Bucket list item!

  6. I've heard a lot of people say they have fun at Mardi Gras!