Every 4th of July, my husband and I converge on the Cape with our families for beachiness and fireworks. The measures we take to arrive should indicate how much we love this place. One year I flew in from a meeting in Memphis and then flew out to another one in Seattle. My husband has arrived via work trips from Boulder and Dallas, and this holiday, my travel escapades have raised the "pains I take to arrive on the shores of Cape Cod Bay" bar to previously unimagined heights.
Making this year especially exciting for us, is the presence of our little guy. Now, we're not trying to shove clams down his throat or anything, but my husband and I really want him to love it here. When we have a Capehouse of our own, which I say with confidence because if you believe it you can achieve it, he will be compelled to come from wherever he lives, regardless of travel hurdles.
Romantic notion? Yes.
Pain in the ass to bring it to life? You bet.
I am stating the obvious when I say our 4th of July Fest is different with a baby in tow. There are the expected changes: painful travel, enough baby accessories to fill a Sportwagen, the realization that your child is more interested in eating sand than reading in the sun thus significantly shortening your beach time and staving you previously ravenous appetite for the beach, and blogging on the night of the fireworks instead of roasting Smores and drinking a Bud Light Lime across the street next to a beach bonfire.
I expected these differences. What I did not expect, was the parade.
We've heard about this parade and for 10 years and have literally heard the horns honking and kids screeching with delight from the warm, comfy nooks of the back bedroom bed. Said parade starts at an hour that only marathoners-in-training and parents of small children see. My amoeba-ey thighs make it clear which category I call home.
This morning, we were awake a disgusting 90 minutes before the parade began. On the front porch we watched fellow parade-goers come out in droves and I realized my pink pajama pants and gray sweatshirt were not up to code. Uncle Sam stood across the street from me and his slutty daughter was next door in a Stars 'n Strips bikini and a red feather boa. I say slutty because it was overcast. No one dresses like that on a cloudy Cape day.
The parade consisted of spangled pick-up trucks, SUVs, antique cars, and convertibles filled with kids and seemingly drunk 20-somethings throwing candy to their fans. Spiderman was in the back of one truck, shooting some badass webs at the crowd.
Try as I might to find something to mock, beyond Uncle Sam and his daughter, there was nothing. The honking cars, happy kids, bleary-eyed adults drinking Dunkin' Donuts coffee, and random superhero were quite charming in an old fashioned 4th of July kind of way.
To stay in the mood I am going to have a 4th of July highball, put on a polka dot bikini, figure out how to rock a bandana in a cool way like I'm riding in a convertible with Cary Grant, and look happily forward to the day my little guy is in the back of his uncle's pick-up truck waving a flag and tossing candy.
Scratch that. I want him to be the random superhero. Or maybe a random dinosaur or Mario Brothers character just for kicks. After all, I'm choking on parade Kool-aid after just one viewing. Please stick around for at least another year and give me a chance to mock this thing like it was meant to be mocked!
Happy 4th. May all your parades be unmockable at first blush!