Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Day 59

June 22

Today was the first parade of the season for us. The HEGG parade. I've been told that we are standing for a long time while the Governor General inspects the guards and sometimes the band. This is how the morning went: We got dressed in the morning and were inspected on the parade square in full ceremonials. Then we got onto the bus and were dropped off behind parliament; usually we will get dropped off at the drill hall which is a few blocks away so we can parade onto the hill, but this was more of a standing thing. So we were told to drink lots of water and gatorade.... they ususally have the gatorade soooo strong that it looks like pure syrup and we have to water it down hard core. eeew! ok, on to buisness. I learned that ppl like to play tricks before the parade starts: putting drink cups on ppl's bayonettes, doing stuff to their instruments when they are on the ground etc. luckily the guys I made friends with are like the older brothers I never had and they took care of me!So then we formed up and stood there waiting for the parade to start. It was funny to hear ppl say "man! NOW I have to pee? really?" Goiong to the bathroom is not easy with the tunic on. You basically have to take everything off to go because we are wearing suspenders under to keep the pants up. There was a bit of routine drill that happened before we started marching. Then we were off! I did not make one drill mistake with my feet! I got every mark time, halt and march off the mark time-it was epic! I was nervous because I was standing on the left, so the drum major was on my right = my bell was in the way, but there was a blank file in our row so I got to move in one file towards the center and then I could see a lot better. We did all the parading and got into position for inspection. After playing 2 inspection tunes, the first guard went down. I could see the medics running out with the stretcher and carrying him off. He was pretty tall! Then we played 2-3 more inspection tunes and another guard went down followed by a percussionist. If your bear or tunic is too tight, it makes for a nasty situation and you can just black out. Last year over 11 guards went down! Plus I think it only went up to 20 today and there was a light breeze. There will be more ppl going down when the weather gets hot. Also, don't drink alchohol the night before...not smart, water is good. I think we played 5-6 inspection tunes and then we did the march off. Oh, I forgot to mention that we stood and waited for 20 minutes on the hill before the GG showed up! After the march off we took the group photo with the GG and all the chain of command. Too bad the Halifax ppl missed the photo. When we got back there was a BBQ and we were off for the day. Good thing, because I took a 3 hour nap! wow. I also missed supper because of that, so I made Oatmeal!! Then I polished my boots and went to the pool where I did 60 lengths! Yay!

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