Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Labor Day Weekend in Newtown, CT

“Never trouble another for what you can do for yourself.” ~Thomas Jefferson

September 1 - 4: Slept in a bit in my trailer in the parking lot at Cape Cod Beer Company. Then blogged a bit, then hit the road. Some of the trees are just beginning to turn their Fall colors. Arrived in Newtown, Connecticut before dinner bearing three growlers of Cape Cod Beer. They were a big hit with my relatives.

My cousin, Joanne lives in a section of Newtown called Sandy Hook. Her daughter Lori is five years younger than I am and is married with three nearly-teenagers. Met the kids, two for the first time. The kids went to bed early - their first week of getting up early for school had exhausted them. Us grown-ups stayed up a bit too late playing various card games from my game bin.

L to R in the Photo above: Kurt, Kevin, Teri, Kirsten, Eric, Lori and Joanne, all in front of Big Buddy, my trailer.

Up at 7:00 am on Sunday morning and off to the big semi-annual flea market. Found a nice bedside table for Joanne. She's a good bargainer and got the price reduced from $75 to $40. After all the fresh air, sunshine, and antiques we could stand, Lori gave me the driving tour of Sandy Hook and Newtown.

I worked on my trip for a while – this is the part where driving could get very dicey! The next leg of my journey brings me to Long Island, NY via a ferry from Connecticut ($90 one-way for my van-trailer combo). Then I drive from the Hamptons-section of Long Island to Brooklyn, NY. Then from Brooklyn to Scarsdale, NY where other relatives live, and from there down into New Jersey.

While Lori and her husband Eric worked on dinner, I taught the kids several new games from my collection. Of course we stayed up too late again.

Monday morning we were up at 7:00 am again in order to get good seats for the big Newtown Labor Day Parade. We departed at 8:00 am, lawn chairs in tow as we wanted to get good seats. Many folks began lining up their chairs along the parade route the night before. We should have brought the card games because we had nearly two hours to kill as we waited for the parade to begin at 10:00 am.

It was a festive parade that lasted two hours. There were four bagpipe bands in kilts and half-a-dozen Fife & Drum bands in Revolutionary War-type uniforms from all over the state. Every local school and church marched in the parade.

All three political parties (Rep, Dem, and Independent) marched. Several high school marching bands, a band of ex-high school band marchers, the governor’s horse patrol, the governor and all the other state and local politicians, and my personal favorites, the Shriners on their mini-scooters and in tiny gas-powered cars. (Photo above left). It was a really good old-fashioned New England-style parade!

Lori and Eric's oldest son, Kurt, nearly 13, rode his skateboard in the parade. He and the other skateboarders are collecting money for a new skateboard park. Everyone but Kurt is in the photo below, L to R: Kevin, Kirsten (twins), Eric, Joanne and Lori.

Monday was not only Labor Day, it was also Joanne's birthday. We all thanked her for arranging the parade for her birthday! Eric grilled filet minon steaks, Lori made Joanne's favorite carrot cake, all decorated with candles, and the kids had surprisingly good voices when we sang, "Happy Birthday." After cake they regaled us with some Brittany Spears song on the Karaoke machine.

Tuesday morning I overslept. Joanne wanted to take me to the Diner for breakfast, but instead I took a shower while she got breakfast sandwiches to go. Lori came home from work and we chatted nearly too long. I remembered the time just in time, and they had me follow them to Hwy 25. Then I was off to Bridgeport, Connecticut, where I would take the ferry across to Long Island, NY.
Thank you to Southampton Publick House for allowing me to use their wireless Internet to work on this blog.

No comments: