Parade with a difference

Phil & Nikki Hoskins
Fri 20 Aug 2010 17:53
Provincetown situated on Cape Cod is a popular location from which to go fishing, swimming (watch out for those Great Whites!) and whale watching. It is also home to a thriving artist and gay community and the carnival season attracts plenty of people from both groups. Numerous art galleries have exhibitions of excellent works on show and the streets become home to a continuous form of exhibition as people dress as they wish without fear of retribution or violation (that is legal violation, as we can't vouch for any other sort). Mime artists and musicians, some good some not so good also form part of the festival. There was plenty on show to amuse the thousands of visitors that had flocked to this popular resort for the occasion.
Squeezebox player with admirers                                                                                            Adam & Steve underline the 'Fantasy Jungle' theme
Our first visit ashore in Provincetown gave an indication of the theme of 2010 carnival week.  'Jungle Fantasy', obvious really as inflatable renditions of exotic wild animals of all shapes and sizes adorned walls and buildings throughout the town centre.  We were soon mingling with some very snappy dressers or rather - cross-dressers and the atmosphere was charged with excitement (as well as a few heady aromas) as holiday makers, day trippers, cruisers and fishing enthusiasts walked amongst the hundreds of men who choose to be well... woman-like with varying degrees of success for the duration of the festival.  Some were pausing to be photographed with any bystanders that happened to have a camera handy - and there were plenty of those.
  Provincetown is full of charming old cottages                                                        and the property at the end of the pier is yours for $700,000!
The harbour was interesting with a replica sailing ship from a long past era on show along with dozens of old fishing boats in the commercial area, many looking incapable of weathering anything nearing a gale, but of course looks don't always count judging by the hulks we've seen at sea whilst cruising.
Replica it maybe but spot the white radar dome under the crows nest & a saggy inflatable dinghy on the stern that rather spoil the illusion 
Back in town ...
The Admiral sets about recruiting new crew members who seem quite keen                   and a dog bakery for your doughberman!
There was a full calendar of events set for the week, although we had arrived more or less towards the end of the festivities. It was the parade that was eagerly anticipated and we were certainly not expecting it to be a repeat of the Rockland event.  We wondered just what might be thrown to the watching crowds from the various floats - sweets maybe? or something decidedly more adult orientated perhaps! We would soon find out.
We badly needed a quick shopping spree as we had friends coming over for nibbles and cocktails. Threading our way back through the throng of people with handfuls of shopping bags we felt a little out of place as we stopped to view the hilarious goings-on in town. About to start was a 'Drag Bingo' session where guests had paid for their entry and proceeds from this and many of the events staged throughout the week were raised for many charities.
These were the worst supermarket bags ever - bar none!                                                     .........but it was worth pausing to see the fun
The drag Bingo about to start                                                                                            but the lion and monkey gave it a miss                                              
Tarzan with his Jane were much photographed                                                               Male zebra on the prowl - lions beware
So to the Parade. Like all Parades it didn't start on time - or if it did it took a long time to get to our viewing spot along the way. There was no shortage of entertainment as many of the participants took a pre-parade stroll along the street to soak up some of the atmosphere and entertain the crowds. It lasted over an hour here are the pic of the pics.................(edited of course by the Admiral!)
The parade commences sings the town crier ....                                                                     ....and thousands line the street
How many jungly critters can you squeeze onto one pick-up....                                                                 ....or bananas on a frock come to that
Less intimidating zebras                                                                                                                  But since when were zebras and lions on such close terms, but what's that giraffe up to?
Hup -two- three- four. These ladies were excellent                                                                     But where did they get a life-sized elephant from for goodness sake?
(Real) Police officers keep the road clear, some on two wheels...                                     .....but with promotion you get an extra wheel
Here come the 'kiddies'                                                                                                                       .....there go the Tarzans
Zebras wearing trainers.......                                                                                                   ........... and then some semi-zebras appeared
and lastly .... us....with the strings of beads that were thrown from many of the floats. No sweets this time!