the 4th    2003-07-04 14:03:30 ET
I had to work today, because the route that I do has too much work and can't be done in 4 days like the other crews managed to do. So I'm at my second job of the day,a church in a little town called Aurora. And I'm mowing along and people start showing up and setting up chairs along the street. I'm thinking that I know they don't want to sit and take in the spectical of me cutting grass. And it hits me, they are about to have a parade. I have an hour left of stuff to do and I'm not going to get away. damn I'm gonna have to watch this goofy small town parade. bugger this I got work to do, right? So I end up sitting alone on a big rock out in front of this place, its one of those center of town historical looking churches. So the parade shows up and it what I expected all kinda hoaky and stuff. All the town's fire equipment is there. They had a tractor pulling a haywagon full of kids tossing candy at the crowd cars with people in them waving, abunch of cheerleaders doing what they do (ugh). There was a junior karate club that would stop and the little one would break boards and the crowd would cheer. There was a 15' inflatable pink panther leaning on a giant inflatable hot tub( I didn't get the symbolism there). A biker on a Harley(?), another bunch of biker looking dudes carrying a giant flag by the corners, (I think they were vets). A Scotish marching band with bag pipes(that was cool). More cars pulling wagons full of little league ball teams, more fire equipment, more flags. And no one seemed to think any of it was strange, every one was happy to be there, happy to be with the people around them having a great time celebrating the birth of our nation. I'm German, Scots Irish, Norwegan,and Cherokee, my ancesters have been here 90,250,300,and 3000yrs or so. I guess I'm about as American as it gets. Picture this big guy with the face from my page sitting there with a tear running down his face. It was wierd but I don't think I've ever been more proud to be an American than at that moment, what a day.

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