Bristol, Rhode Island
Rob & Frances Lythgoe
Sun 5 Jul 2015 21:05
Bristol on the 4th July was the ultimate goal of the OCC Rally, because the July 4th parade here is the longest established one in the whole of the USA, and boy do they take it seriously.
The night of the 3rd is celebrated with a huge firework display which we enjoyed from someone else's yacht, but before that we were all invited to a 'pot luck' supper at another OCC members beautiful home right on the shore of the bay. For the uninitiated, a 'pot luck' dinner is where everyone takes a starter, main or dessert and you all share. It works really well.
The following day was the 230th running of the parade and it took about three hours to pass. We didn't see it all because we got hungry, and after the 12th all American marching band with cheer leaders they do all get a bit samey, but it was really good to see their sense of pride, community and a great positive attitude. Where you would find a few thousand teenagers in any UK city prepared to fly the flag in tights and funny hats I have no idea, which is a shame really.
The next day we went to the Herreshoff museum. I won't go in to detail here, Google it if you want to know more, but it was amazing. Two brothers basically led the world in performance ship building from right there in Bristol. They designed and built many successful and famous Americas Cup yachts, and one of them was completely blind from a very early age but overcame his disability.
These are, believe it or not, the 'State Police'. We thought it was some kind of sick joke, but they really do wear jack boots and have an exagerated step when marching. I can't begin to think where they got the idea from. It was deadly serious.
Here are a few marching bands for you
, they managed to lighten things up a bit.
Recruits from the Naval Academy
A few grown ups dressing up like it's 1700's. In fact, lots and lots of grown ups.
We went back to the yacht 'Lily' for drinks later. Just how many people can you get in the cockpit of one boat?