Friday, November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving in the city

The first thing I was thankful for Thursday morning was a beautiful, sunny day. The temperature reached into the 60s-- perfect weather to watch my first Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in person.

I had planned to bundle up in about four layers of clothing. Instead I wore a long-sleeve shirt and a fall jacket. It felt even warmer outside because of the crowds.

The parade's Web site said we may want to get there as early as 6:30 a.m. to get a good view. No thanks. We got there at 8:15, 45 minutes before the parade started, and contended with only about four rows of people in front of us. Paul and I are tall, so that hardly mattered. Not long after we got there, the major crowds began to arrived and it appeared to be difficult to even move down the sidewalks.

We were at about the midway point of the parade, at 50th and Broadway. That's about 16 blocks from Macy's, where all the performances were. I couldn't help but notice that we were surrounded by symbols of New York and Ohio:
a Duane Reade pharmacy across the street ...

and an Applebee's to our right.

The parade got to us at 9:30. The parade featured a few semi-celebrities: Good Charlotte, Dolly Parton, Lifehouse, Wynonna Judd, Menudo and I think a few people from High School Musical. Of course there were several high school bands from around the country, and I couldn't help but recall how jealous I was when the Defiance High School band were invited to perform years back.

The helium balloons looks even larger in person than they do on TV. It sometimes felt like they were right on top of us. When any of them veers toward the sidewalk, the entire crowd cried, "Whooo!" in unison.

The parade ends at noon on TV but was done at 11:30 where we were. Then everyone crowded onto Broadway to take pictures and maybe catch a last glimpse of the parade as it winded south. It was strange to be standing in the middle of such a normally-busy throroughfare.

I wanted to take advantage of the sun, so we headed to Central Park a few blocks away, and we weren't the only ones. The park was completely filled with kids on the playgrounds and families (including us) climbing the huge rocks near the southern edge. Paul found out last night on the Internet that there are books dedicated to bouldering in Central Park, the rocks are that big.

The ice rink was busy as well, and Christmas music drifted into the air. Then we walked down Fifth Avenue, peering at a few of the holiday window decorations.

We cooked a traditional Thanksgiving dinner-for-two that night, but the day was certainly not like any holiday I'd ever experienced before. Unfortunately the warm weather didn't last long-- it's back to hats and gloves today.


  1. Sounds like a great day :) Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. I loved the warm weather, too. It was in the 70s in Baltimore--craziness. The temp dipped like 30 degrees overnight, though. :(



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