I love a parade!

Our second day together began with peanut butter granola bars for breakfast, followed by a drive of nearly an hour to Manassas, Virginia, where our goal was to attend the local Veteran’s Day Parade.  It would occur on Saturday, November 10, at 11:00 AM.  This was somewhat disconcerting to me, as I firmly believe that Veteran’s Day Parades should always begin at 11:00 AM, on November 11.  However, we were somewhat limited in our choice of parades, as the one in Manassas is the ONLY Veteran’s Day Parade in the entire Greater Washington, D.C. area! Unbelievable and frankly unconscionable.

We parked at a CVS pharmacy and walked several blocks through and around downtown Manassas, seeking the perfect standing place from which to view the festivities.  Manassas is kind of like Branson, but on a slightly larger scale and with – as seems to be the case throughout northern Virginia – lots of lovely old buildings.  We parked ourselves near the grandstand, because we figured that was where the various groups and troupes would pause to do their thing.  I especially wanted to have the marching bands play right on front of me.

The parade began with the introduction of a bunch of dignitaries, and we endured that.  Then a lady stood in the middle of the street and sang The Star-Spangled Banner.  I sang along, because I believe that’s what you’re supposed to do with the national anthem, but it made me think of Ms. Bonnie Jean telling the story of the bombardment of Ft. McHenry, in the old schoolhouse at Silver Dollar City, and I began to cry.  = )  Then came a marching band, which was just dandy.  Following that, we were treated to a LOT of military-looking vehicles, a number of color guards, a lot of Boy Scouts, a fair number of Girl Scouts, two bagpipe-and-drum groups, and about 75 motorcycles, and another big jeep-looking thing.  and that was it.

I was stunned.  Only ONE marching band?  No Shriners in tiny cars?  No Mustangs?  No men in knickers on big wheel bicycles?  No candy thrown?  And no fire engine at the end?!?!?  I am truly  thankful that I got to go to a Veteran’s Day Parade, but I really think the folks in Manassas need to contact the folks in Branson to find out how the thing is supposed to be done!

We enjoyed a great lunch at Roy Rogers.  I hadn’t had a cheeseburger in quite some time and it was very tasty.  Any guesses on what Katie had?  = )  The niftiest thing in that restaurant was a self-serve drink machine that was VERY high-tech.  You select the drink you want (about ten options), get your ice, then select the specific type of drink, and it comes squirting out.  For example, I initially chose lemonade, but on the second selection, I was given the option of some eight different kinds of lemonade!  I chose raspberry lemonade and it was so good I took a refiull to go.

“Go” was down the road a piece to the Manassas battlefield, site of two significant Civil War battles; First Manassas in July of 1861, and Second Manassas in August of 1862.  At the visitor center we saw various exhibits and learned stuff about First Manassas, but the really neat thing was the guided walking tour of a farm at the other end of the battlefield where Second Manassas transpired.  The guide was fascinating and we both enjoyed the walk and learned a lot, including the fact that the South tended to name its battles for local towns, while the North generally named its battles for geographic features.  Hence, these battles are known in Virginia as the Battles of Manassas (town) and in the North as the Battles of Bull Run (creek).

Having spent the day on the road, we wrapped up with a shopping trip to Wal-Mart (NEVER go the Wal-Mart in Leesburg!) and Target, to purchase the goodies Katie wanted for filling her Operation Christmas Child shoebox and some items of interest for Josiah, who had a crammed packed weekend, with major paper writing and study for a big test.  He had helped Katie and me on some stuff and we wanted to bless him with some junk food to aid the study process and a couple items of warm clothing, of which we were fairly sure he had none.  Llamas do have fur, but they still tend to get chilly in the winter, and winter does come early in Colorado.

At home, we had a fine dinner of salad with homegrown tomatoes, followed by a grand session of Bookworm Adventures.


1 Response to “I love a parade!”

  1. 1 hab318 November 13, 2012 at 1:14 am

    Chicken strips and fries?

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