Emile tilted his face to the shower, feeling the stream of glitter sift across his forehead and down his cheeks. Wearing the glitter always made him happy, made him feel taller and more alive. He needed the glitter before he could dance, and he was definitely going to dance.
He had been a masquerader since he was a boy. The parades were the thing from home that he missed the most this time of year. He remembered nights spent crafting designs, arguing about colors, about ornamentation, remembered the elation that flooded his body after a parade, keeping him awake into the early hours despite his complete physical exhaustion.
No one had told him about the Labor Day parade. His first September in New York, it had caught him by surprise, and he’d had to watch from the sidelines, his body and heart aching to join the crews of dancers.
One parade a year could never equal the parade schedule he had followed at home, but it helped smooth some of the longing for the past. The glitter, especially, reminded him of himself, brought him back to who he was.
This is a photo I took at the Caribbean Day Parade that happens every Labor Day here in Brooklyn. This is a HUGE event, with thousands and thousands of parade participants on floats and on foot and over a million parade watchers. Crazy and fabulous and beautiful. I don’t actually know the significance of the people with the glitter, but I flat-out LOVE the people with the glitter. Period. This year was only my second parade. I’ve always avoided it because I’m not a fan of big crowds, but I finally summoned the courage to go two years ago … and promptly kicked myself for not having gone in the past! I think I’ll have to put up a slideshow with some of the pictures I took … maybe that’s my tomorrow post!