Local Flavor: Memorial Day

When I was a kid, Memorial Day always conjured-up images of World War II heroism and Memphis Belle-style stories, but as you grow-up the ideas of war, fighting, patriotism, and duty get a lot cloudier and often morally ambiguous depending on the situation. These days I celebrate the sacrifices folks have suffered for our country's sake but also try to think of the various sacrifices that are ongoing daily around the world (and here) in that same name of promoting the freedoms our country has been lucky enough to enjoy -- and hopefully lucky enough not to squander going forward.

So -- today was our small-town, Norman Rockwell-style Memorial Day. As a dad of two Girl Scouts, that meant I played waterboy for the the kids as well as random photographer. We had two parades to go to -- one in Hancock and one in Rochester -- and that meant a lot of hoofing-it. I'm just going to say right now that I'm glad I wasn't carrying the flag slings and had a backpack instead.

The eagle at the top of the Civil War Memorial in Rochester's park is curiously deco.

It was an absolutely gorgeous day today -- so while I waited-around I did get a lot of flower-sniffing in. Hancock's been making its own green downright fancy with flowering trees and a brand-new bandstand (well, a few years old, now), and it was nice to enjoy it without having to rush-about right away.

Here's the parade down the main drag in Hancock.

After the parades, our Memorial Day finished-up nice and quiet -- we got creemees for the kids at Skip Mart (our local gas station), lunched on our porch (did I mention it was beautiful today?), I did a little rototilling for a friend, and let the kids freeze themselves in the river as they like to do. I know I used to love chill water, too, but it's a bit hard to imagine enjoying it as much as they do, now.

Two hours of parading and the Scouts finished in good form. I was shocked that the youngest girls hacked it so well.