All on a Mardi Gras Day

It's over. Again. Thank God. Every year, I'm so excited about Mardi Gras arriving that I can't stand it. And every year, by Ash Wednesday, I'm incredibly relieved that it's all over. And exhausted. And tired of purple, green, and gold. This year was no exception, and I think I lost even more brain cells this year than usual. I blame it on being middle-aged. (In dog years, I'm 287.) But it might have had something to do with the fact that I went to every single parade, with the exception of Bacchus & Endymion, which just seemed like too much of a good thing (i.e., an insane amount of people fighting over beads and the neutral ground). And I missed one day parade on the first Saturday. But other than that, I was at Every. Single. Parade.

And now it's over, and I'm glad. And I will start being ready for more parades in about 9 months....

Highlights of this year's season, I think, included running into some acquaintances in the Quarter who invited us to watch Krewe du Vieux from the balcony of a friend of a friend. No one mentioned that said friend's friend owned 18 cats, all of whom were housed inside of her 300 square-foot apartment and apparently used the entire apartment as one giant litter box. I've just about gotten the smell out of my nose. But watching K du V from a balcony (with lots of fresh air) was definitely a new experience. Not quite the same as watching it from the street, but fun anyway. And then afterwards, cat lady pulled out several bead bags overflowing with old beads, so we had fun chucking those to people on the street. At least, it was fun as long as you didn't put the beads too close to your face while throwing (see cat pee, above). I threw to middle-aged men and women and had great fun ignoring the usual 20-somethings who love to lift up their shirts in between bouts of throwing up in the street.

As usual, by Mardi Gras morning, when I was getting up at 6:30 a.m. to get out to St. Charles Avenue, I was pretty much done and questioning my sanity. But after a couple of milk punches, everything seemed much better. And then the Buzzards came by, and I got to say hello to my husband. And then Rex rolled by, and I caught one of the stuffed masked captain throws they gave out this year, and Emmeline was thrilled. And then Kenny got back from marching with the Buzzards and we watched the noisy, excessive, but-the-kids-absolutely-love-them truck parades. And then, on the way to our friends' house for dinner, we ran into some Mardi Gras Indians. And it was, as usual, a perfect Mardi Gras day.

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