Saturday H took his band (SWHS) to the second marching festival of the year. This event came on the heels of an out-of-town football game the night before and since we had to be back at the school in the wee hours of the morning to travel for this competition we were already functioning on less than the desirable amount of sleep needed.
Now, let me get this straight to begin with. I love marching festivals. It’s like binge watching halftime shows. But, by 7:30pm I was tired, irritable, and ready for this to be over. I knew that by the time we got home and crawled into bed it would be close to 24 hours awake time for us. Trying not to focus on that sad bit of realization, I stood with H at the top of the ramp watching the last band perform before the awards ceremony.
As anyone knows who attends any kind of musical performances, the etiquette for entering and exiting the show is not allowed during the performance. H has an issue with sitting and watching and would rather stand at the roped off ramp to view some of the different bands, especially the last few as he waits for the scores to be given out.
As we stood there quietly on the front row behind the rope waiting for the last band to play, two little girls snaked their way through the crowd gathered behind us and squirmed in close to the rope – the oldest stepping on my toes. She did turn and apologize very sweetly as she stepped into my place front and center.
The oldest girl was about ten, tall for her age, and the younger one couldn’t be more than five and quite sassy. They wiggled and talked (rather loudly) and snatched popcorn away from each others bags, laughing and carrying on until the youngest dropped her bag of popcorn over the rope, spilling the contents out over the aisle ahead. I have to say – I saw that coming. Off they both fled to purchase another bag, stepping on my toes again with another apology.
H and I gave each other that look – you know the one – the ‘Where are their parents?’ look. I could actually hear the group closest to us breathe a sigh of relief as they sped away.
Just as we were beginning to get our bearings back and enjoy the show the little imps pushed through the spectators making their way back front and center as if they had tickets bearing the spot where they stood – which was closer to me than I liked. Armed with another full bag of popcorn, an ice cream sandwich that was slowly melting down their wrists, and a bottled drink clamped tightly under each right arm, they took up where they had left off, stepping on my toes again and apologizing, not missing a beat. I thought they would be more at home at a circus. And…where were those parents anyway?
The whole time this was taking place I was trying to think of something to say, in a kind way, to let them know this was not permissible behavior. Nothing nice came to mind so I figured it was better to keep my mouth shut since I was working on the last fumes of sleep the night before.
Even through all this, the band played on, thankfully oblivious to the situation on the ramp beside us. As soon as they marched off the field the rope was lifted and Mutt and Jeff left the building (ramp) with me fearing they would be tangled in the rope that lay on the ground and the crowd behind us was right on their coattails leaving us in solitude for a few minutes before the awards ceremony.
Even though he was apprehensive and worried all day as he usually does, H’s band received straight superiors in all categories – Drum Major, Band, Percussion, and Colorguard. His percussion also received the Best in Class Percussion award. With only one year to work with these kids, SWHS is making a comeback.