Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Halloween Parade (accessible parading)

While we’ve attended the annual Mechanicsburg Halloween Parade for almost 10 years, driving there Patti could not remember ever having gone before.

Questioning her further back in time I discover she can remember snippets from over a decade ago and the epic ‘Trick or Treat’ nights from our former home in College Park, MD. – Our home used to host over 225 trick or treat visitors, theatrical effects and music all MC’d by me dressed up as Santa. – We were Halloween!

Progression of Multiple Sclerosis symptoms sure can affect sharing ‘traditions’. Even a 7 PM start is late for someone who prefers to go to bed by 7:30 PM.

Now on the other hand one thing about memory loss is I do not have to get too hung up on tradition or routine. Working exclusively in the now does allow for creativity. Rather than sit and wait for the parade to come to us why not abandon tradition? It was a 68˚F (20˚C) evening in October, why not arrive early and push and roll around to visit the floats, cars, and participants while they were assembling.

‘Accessible parading’ worked better than expected as Patti got close enough to actually see and interact. We pushed and rolled through the staging streets (and streets always trump sidewalks) visiting with groups as they put on finishing touches, found ourselves in the middle of a zombie dance rehearsal, and a dancing cow gave Patti a beach ball.

Suddenly on some unspoken cue people assembled into parade formation and we were swept forward in a marching band between bass drums and cymbals as pyscho-clowns on skateboards zoomed by on both sides.

While the band turned left we went straight and escaped laughing.

Whether remembered or not laughing is still fun!

Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer 
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  1. If we could all escape laughing more often it would be a very good thing. ~Mary

  2. I can somehow see, Patrick, that Halloween would be a good holiday for you, getting into the act in Halloweens past with music, costumes, effects, et al! What an adventure that must have been for the trick or treaters that came your way!

    What a great idea to attend the parade before the parade like this; very clever and creative! And how cute for the brief moment of time you guys marched in it; I'm sure the laughing was heard for miles over the drums!

    I also "swear" too that I was just reading about this parade from last year; this year has flown!



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