Take a trip with me way back in your memories. What is the first Thanksgiving that YOU remember? I’ll give you a second after all for some of you that might have been a VERY long time ago. My first Thanksgiving day memory was not of the feast or incredible deserts, but of the Thanksgiving Day parade. It amazes me to this day that people would give up their holiday to march in a parade. Back to my memory it was Charlotte, North Carolina, Nineteen Seventy Something and I was bundled up from head to toe and mom, dad and I were waiting for the parade to start. Two problems with this equation: 1) It was really cold. No snow or ice, but really cold. You would think North Carolina would have cold winters just because North was in the name, but in Charlotte, I remember mild winters and a decent snow every couple of years. On that Thanksgiving, the wind must have been blowing pretty hard or something. All I know is that I was cold straight through to the bone. 2) We were REALLY early. I was too young to remember if we just left too early, or read the starting time of the parade in the paper wrong. Keep in remind I am really young in this memory so it very well could have been thirty minutes early, as the young ones have a very limited concept of time.
So there we were mom, dad and me, REALLY COLD and REALLY early to what was probably my first and last Thanksgiving Day parade in the flesh. We had parked our car in a parking lot and walked to our spot. I couldn’t tell you if it was the beginning, middle or end of the parade route. I don’t even remember if the walk was that far. Let’s be honest I was probably carried anyway. Cold, cold, cold, and then a police car pulled up. I don’t know if he was working the parade but he could tell that me and my mom were miserably cold. He let us sit in the front seat of his patrol car to warm up before the parade. My dad stayed outside and didn’t seem to mind the cold, but if he had sat in the car he would have had to sit in the backseat. Even at a young age, I knew you NEVER wanted to sit in the back of a police car.
My memories fade from there. I don’t remember if the parade was the type that threw candy and NO not all parades throw candy. I do remember Santa Clause on his sleigh high above his parade float. Waving and smiling, and then like many children of my time it hit me. I better be good, Christmas is coming. Back in the seventy-somethings, department stores held off on transitioning to Christmas till after Thanksgiving and even then for some stores it was a slow process. Some of the magic has been lost through the year with stores and radio stations transitioning to Christmas right after Halloween.
Well, that’s MY First MEMORY of Thanksgiving and what was I thankful back then. I was thankful for my loving mom and dad that took me to what I remember was a pretty cool parade even though it was cold. I was also thankful for that police officer that allowed us to warm up in his cozy car. So what is YOUR 1st memory of Thanksgiving?
Happy Thanksgiving, enjoy every moment and…
LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST,