Growing up in Toronto there was a great beer commercial called, “I am Canadian.” In it, a very impassioned guy tells us the greatness of being Canadian. And, while I don’t drink beer, I really bought into the whole retro-pride we Canadians have. So it should be no surprise that I was completely clueless about this whole Memorial Day thing. In Toronto, on November 11th, we came home wearing red poppies and having heard some poem about Flanders Field. We have some sort of odd patriotism in Canada, but America goes all out. And I was not prepared.
We had Yael’s birthday brunch this morning. It is exactly what a Sunday morning should be. Then, we took Bernice (hurray!) and Iky, Coby and Tali (more hurrays!) who are in visiting from Silver Spring to Chagrin Falls. For those of you who watched Gilmore Girls (no shame in showing the love), Chagrin Falls is Stars Hollow. It is quaint and sweet and all-American. And it loves itself some Memorial Day. The town is covered in red, blue and white. It had a cute carnival and sold everything that middle America tries to sell you at a State Fair (minus the deep-fried Snickers bars). And then the parade. Children lined up on the side of the road watching men in kilts, small children in unfortunate cheerleader costumes, marching bands and every firetruck in the entire city (pop. 4,081) come out tossing candy to the crowds.
The weather was a perfect 68 degrees. The sun was shining. There were flags everywhere. We left the parade and went to a park — filled with huge fields so we could fly our kite, play frisbee, football and baseball (or play superheroes if you were on Nani and Dov duty). We came home, made the requisite BBQ and are now all sitting in front of a movie.
And here’s the clincher: I may be wrong but I don’t think it’s even Memorial Day yet. I think it’s tomorrow. But we totally nailed it. So I’m thinking tomorrow we’re just going to dial it in, shop the sales and eat pizza. Part of the magic of America.
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