We lined up right next to the bagpipe band. It was right before the kids would normally have lunch, so the almonds and raisins I brought along were eagerly gobbled up by Matthew and Chiara. When we started off, the parade was going quite fast - it was hard to keep up with everybody else and still hand out the campaign materials and talk to anyone about them. After a while, I got used to giving them out with one hand while holding Matthew's hand with the other. On the other side of the street, Charmaine was walking with Chiara, who was demonstrating scarily capable parade technique: waving like a pageant contestant, executing some dancing and spinning at certain times. I only got a chance to see it a few times at the end, but evidently she was a big hit. We have no idea where she picks these things up, but she definitely has a sense of theatricality.
It was so warm that by the end we were all glad that it only really a seven-block-long parade -that's a real perk of parades in small cities. Chiara will probably always enjoy playing to the crowd, but I don't think Matthew would want to march in a parade again without anything particular to do - performing would probably work for him, but just walking along bored him silly. Who knows when their next parade might be - could be seven or eight years from now, for all I now - but whenever that is, I wonder what they will remember about their first time?