I had to come to CT to help my dad with some business but decided that I wanted to get into town for the Parade of Lights which is a relatively recent annual tradition with a parade of fire trucks, tractors with trailers etc all covered in Christmas lights and playing Christmas music with people waving from makeshift floats (hay wagons) and fire truck beds. It's a fun way to kick off the season (it was postponed this year due to weather - lucky me to have it fall on a day when I'm in town!) and bring out the locals!
Also happening in my hometown is a gingerbread house display. Local people and groups made 42 gingerbread houses and dioramas which are on display at various businesses around town. The fun thing is that many of them are replicas (or slightly rough renditions) of local buildings, churches and landmarks. I haven't seen them all but the ones I've seen are fabulous! One local woman made the episcopal church complete with Cheerio trees, dried lentil grass, dyed Rice Krispie hedges and fruit roll up stained glass. It's pretty amazing! I'm looking forward to seeing the gingerbread grand piano made to honor the restaurateur who is well known for playing his piano in the dining room of his local restaurant. His daughter made it as I believe he just celebrated his 94th birthday (or so).
Below is the one some local students made for my step-dad's book shop. The trolls around the cottages are from my mom's collection.
My dad and I wandered town and enjoyed some visits, seeing the houses, going to the historical society party (double bonus - got to see my mom and step-dad and some other family there) and after the parade and more visiting at the fire house, we picked up my 18 year old nephew and had a lovely dinner out with him.
The evening ended up being just what I needed as a way to blow off a little steam after working on Dad's stuff all day. Feeling that connected is what I miss living on the Cape. Occasionally I run into people I know but not often! Maybe some day I'll feel more like that but it is good to know that I can always come home to get a taste of it.... Even if I hear "Which one are you?" (People can't tell me apart from my three sisters most of the time...) more than a dozen times at events like these. Oh well. At least they know I'm not "from away"!