Seventy Years Old and scratching another one off my Bucket List! At the very top of my Bucket List, of course, is DON’T KICK THE BUCKET! The order thereafter is of little consequence, just getting to ‘em when I have the time and or the money! The one we will be eliminating this year is (drum roll, please!!!!) going to the MACY’S DAY PARADE!

Yep … This November, thirteen members of the Allen Clan are going to descend on Aunt Valerie and Uncle Noel in Hillsboro, New Jersey, for Thanksgiving Dinner, which will, needless to say, give them a crowded cabin. Before we tackle the turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing, gravy, cranberries, and so on and so on, we are going to go into “The City,” and watch the 95th Annual Macy’s Day Parade!

Now, I have truly mixed emotions about this endeavor. When we scratched The Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena off our Bucket List a few years ago we had to get up at 4 O’CLOCK IN THE MORNING! And, I fear that such may be the case again this November! You have to understand that I was forty-six years old before I realized there even was a 4 o’clock in the morning, so actually getting up at that time is more than a little bit of a challenge.

Next, we have the cold. As I pen this, the high for today in Phoenix is going to be 108 degrees, and in New York City the high will be 70 degrees. That is, basically, a forty degree differential! I’m thinking that, at best, the temperatures in New York City at 4 am Thanksgiving Day are going to be in the low to mid- forties. That doesn’t sound like anything a thin blooded Phoenician should be exposing himself to!

Then, we have the crowds! In 2018 an estimated 3.5 MILLION people gathered to watch the Parade. This is over TWICE as many people who even live in Phoenix! I find a room with thirty people too crowded for comfort! That means that I will be over 116,000 times above my comfort zone! That’s pretty daunting for an ol’ country boy like myself.

At this point, you are probably thinking, “Well, Floyder, if you have all of those concerns, why the smash are you even going to the Parade?” Well, this is where the GOOD NEWS comes in. You see, as much I abhor getting up before daylight, freezing temperatures and large crowds, I love all the members of the Allen Clan even more! The memories that are going to be created that day will live in our family for generations to come! And, of course, there’s the balloons. You know, CHARLIE AND SNOOPY AND BULL-WINKLE, OH MY!!!

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