I love a parade, part 3

Sometimes runs don’t turn out the way you planned.

We were on our way to a trail run at our new stomping grounds, the state park in San Angelo. Mostly it was a chance for Mo to kiss up to her boyfriend Smokey.

And then.

As we pulled up, we saw the sign. “Closed for hunting.” We picked the one weekend of the year that they shut down for what the website refers to as “wildlife management,” and what we refer to as “blasting Bambi.”

Thwarted, we dr0ve downtown to run on the trail along the river.

And then.

The road was closed. A cop sat by the barricade. Mo is uncomfortable confronting cops at barricades, given her shady past as a backup singer with Nirvana during their early years. We parked a block away and walked across the golf course to the trail.

We started down the cinder path that parallels the river. All was well.

And then.

We confronted a large bug and a bunch of guys in fatigues. Even by San Angelo standards, this was unusual.


As we trotted along down the trail, we ran past an endless stream of humankind. Kids in costumes. Antique cars. Shriners. Old veterans in the back of pickups. Harleys. Boy Scouts waving little flags. Lots and lots and lots of flags. We were in the staging area of the Veterans Day parade.

What to do? We joined the parade.

We turned left onto the street where the parade already was in progress. A quick tiptoe through the landmines of the horses that were waiting, and then clear sailing. It was great.

A 2-mile course, totally blockaded. They say running marathons is like moving along in a slow parade. This was the real deal.

We ran along, on the sidewalk when possible and on the street whet in was not. It was the classic small-town party. Proud old veterans, wide-eyed kids, happy parents watching their kids. Blue skies, mid-70s. Patriotism stirs in the heart of the American bear.

We were able to keep pace with the Central High oboe players  and eventually passed them. Yes, it felt good to finally pass someone in a race.

We ended up running and walking the entire parade route, expatriates lost in a sea of patriotism. It was like being in the Macy’s parade, except we didn’t float off while trying to hang on to Underdog. Much fun.

And then.

On the run back, we stumbled across the sculpture garden we’ve been looking for forever, and found Uncle Bob’s artwork.


On the way back to the car, we just sat by the river for a long time, watching the world, and ducks and turtles, go by.


And then.

We were done. We went home and Dad made us ice cream sandwiches. I’ve never been so happy to be a little kid.

Sometimes runs don’t turn out the way you planned.

And that’s not a bad thing at all …

About gary

no sock monkeys were harmed in the making of this blog.
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1 Response to I love a parade, part 3

  1. Jill says:

    The day just got a little bit better. Smiling.

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