I'm officially exhausted, after going to 24 out of the 26 parades. God, do I love Mardi Gras. And I know there's lots of discussion out there about people being too territorial on the parade route, but I have to confess, I'm a parade junkie and love getting as close as possible.
How close? Close enough to almost get hit in the face with a tuba by St. Aug, close enough to catch beads from Bret Michaels, and close enough to interact with the flambeaux. I would like to add, however, that no tarps, caution tape, roped-together ladders, parade chairs, or any other barriers were used to make sure I had a good spot. If you want to be up front for all of the action, then you actually need to get there early and be up front. Nothing makes me crazier than the people who lay 12 ladders down next to each other on the parade route hours ahead of time and then don't actually stand in "their" spot until the parades start rolling.