Another Day in the Country

Contributing writer

How many times in life do you work really hard on something and it all falls flat? Not real often. Even farmers who live by the whim of the weather guess the odds at just how often it is going to rain on the hay, drown out the corn, or lay down the wheat.

The rain is always a two-edged sword — good for some, terrible for others.

It rained on our parade in Ramona. It poured. It flooded. It drenched. We dripped and sogged and slogged and in the end we had to call the whole thing off. For a solid hour, sitting in our wet socks and soggy britches, we called judges, participants, entrants, and entertainers, to say, “Sorry. We’ve had to cancel.”

So what do you do when the rain wipes out your crop — or your event? You just pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again.

Pulling the plug on an event is a difficult thing to do. The committee who had worked so hard to pull this thing off was meeting every hour on the hour asking each other, “Go or no go?”

Pulling the plug on a crop is a difficult thing, I can imagine. I remember a couple of years ago when the frost came late in the spring and farmers had to decide whether to plow under their wheat.

“Will it make anything?” they wondered. “Do we just till it under and plant something else?”

Committee members met Monday evening yet again, asking themselves, “Do we just let this all go until next year? Do we try to make anything yet? Is there an ounce of celebrating still left in us?”

“What about the parade?” Art wanted to know. He’d been working on several things that he sure wanted to see go down the street.

“Can your family still do their float if we change the date?” we asked Julie. “No,” she said sadly.

“What was yours gonna be?”

We had been trying to figure out what our reigning Miss Redneck was going to do with five toilets. She wouldn’t tell. We have to wait until 2011 to find out.

“My kids drove our float (it was a boat) around town in the rain, even though there was no parade,” Jeannie said.

We knew. We’d seen it. We’d cheered and laughed as they went by — at least three times, bailing water with a coffee can.

“When are the musicians available?” we asked. “Not until October?” There was quiet in the room.

Another difficult decision loomed, as it always does, when it rains on your parade! We were all in various stages of mourning. We’d lost something — the anticipation of fun, bringing joy into a little pain-wracked community, a celebration of life and liberty.

Time doesn’t stand still. Life goes on. The convertible that was going to carry Paula and Warren down Main Street as this year’s parade marshals had gone home. The mules and their driver who gave wagon rides in the downpour, finally loaded up and went home, too.

Ramona was quiet. The fireworks were packed away. We watched the rain come down and the creek rise.

“Let’s pick a weekend and just have a street party,” Byron said.

“We could still play games,” Jess said.

“We could have a barbecue pit and roast marshmallows.”

They just wouldn’t give up.

So, that’s what we’re doing. It’s going to be July 25. Ya’ll come — anybody. Bring your hot dogs and your sense of celebration. There’ll be music, free ice cream, and maybe even a cakewalk (if Don gets some more cupcakes made).

It rained on our parade, but it didn’t dampen our spirits.

It’s another day in the country and we won’t let it get us down. Check out our web site at www.redneckinramona.com.

 

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