The stars were out, the weather was mild, and the Christmas lights sparkled as we walked past the old Victorian homes up Park Avenue. Arriving at Victoria Park, we joined our friends who had already saved us a curbside spot and we unpacked our lawn chairs. We had a perfect view of an old red brick church with a turret, now converted into apartments. Although the parade started late, no one seemed to mind as we simply enjoyed each others' company. The kids kept inching out into the street to see if the first float was coming. Eventually, we saw the lights of the first vehicle slowly approach us. One by one the floats went by, the passengers holding their signs, waving their hands and tooting their horns. "MERRY CHRISTMAS!" read many of the signs, rather than the politically correct, "Happy Holidays". One even said "KEEP CHRIST IN CHRISTMAS!" followed by a donkey and Mary and Joseph. It was heartwarming to see that Brantfordites have not forgotten the true meaning of Christmas. Towards the end of the parade, we waved at our son Thomas who danced his way down the street beside a white limou full of members of his youth group from New City Church. Finally, we heard "Ho! Ho! Ho!" The kids looked wide-eyed as Santa waved from his high perch. With the parade coming to a close, we packed up our chairs, the kids packed up their candy, and we walked with our friends back down Park Avenue to Victoria. Everyone was in good humour. My husband Rob commented on the evening: "Brantford has 'salt of the earth' people." I agree. Thank you, Brantford, for a great parade!
Photo courtesy http://newimg.bbc.co.uk.