Tuesday, December 18, 2012
We were staying at Steve Wallace's house out on Staten Island. Steve works at the Police Academy in New York City. He drove us to the Academy which is right in the neighborhood of the School of Visual Arts where I went to college. After a quick visit to his office where we left Reese's, Carol's Dachshund, we were escorted up to Macy's by another officer, Joe Deligate. We drove through barricade after barricade until we were right across from Macy's. There was a special section reserved for police family and we pressed in.
I sketched as we waited for the parade to begin. My older brother Don Thorspecken showed up with his kids, Nicki and Kyle. There was a long wait. Cheerleaders sat in the street hugging their legs trying to stay warm. There were bleachers set up across the street and that was where the TV camera's were. Macy's had a large Believe sign on the side of the store. I believe it had to do with the newspaper editors reply to Virginia when she asked if there is a Santa Claus.
Confetti cannons announced the start of the parade. We were at the point where the parade turned right, so we had an unobstructed view of all the floats and balloons as they approached. One balloon was of a Shelf Elf. Carol practices this tradition. A shelf elf is in the home in the week prior to Christmas. This elf reports back to Santa telling him if the children have been naughty or nice. Each day the elf is hidden in a new hiding spot and the kids try to find him. As we ate breakfast one morning, the Kids, Anna and Kirsten discovered the elf sitting right on the light above the table. I hadn't noticed, since I wasn't looking.
Floats stopped at our corner so we got to shout out to the stars in the parade, like Whoopie Goldberg and Adam Sandler. Teen pop stars got the loudest shout outs. I didn't recognize them, but the teens behind me certainly did! Singer, Carley Ray Jepson, who sang that "Call me Maybe" song was on a float. The huge balloons loomed over us as they shifted in the wind. The parade went on for like five hours before we got to see Santa on his sleigh. Nini Thorspecken, my 17 year old cousin visiting from Germany, was right up front, pressed against the metal barricade. I think she was impressed by this American tradition.