Late last spring and into the summer months I wrote a handful of blog posts that I never published. I am sure I did this intentionally as we were in campaign mode and I was a little paranoid…or protective…. or tired of being in the fish bowl…. Anyway, none of it matters now that the Senator’s campaign has successfully come to a close, so I thought I would share some of my tales from the trail…
July 3, 2010
Every 4th of July, the City of Bethany, Oklahoma holds a parade to celebrate our Independence. Let me first say that Bethany is straight out of a Norman Rockwell painting and the people who live there are some of the nicest people I have ever met. Truly kind, salt of the earth type people. Excellent schools, churches, businesses….it is old world and all good. Unlike political fundraisers, I happen to actually look forward to participating in the Bethany parade… maybe because of my first parade experience eight years ago.
It all started when the Senator and I purchased the opportunity to borrow an antique fire truck for a day. We bought this as a silent auction item at the Bethany Public School Foundation’s fundraiser and decided to ask the owner if he might like to drive it for the 4th of July Parade. That wasn’t too much to ask, was it? Anyway, it turned out to be such a wonderful idea and a huge hit on the campaign trail. Of course, you can imagine the fire truck full of our friends and volunteers….men, women and children wearing campaign t-shirts and red, white and blue beads, throwing candy into the crowd. The Senator and I walked behind the truck and were followed by two volunteers carrying our banner with the Senator’s logo and his eye-catching logo’d pick up truck trailing behind.
My college age cousin, who had been assisting the Senator out door knocking, was driving the campaign truck with another good friend who we shall refer to as ‘the mouth of the south’. He earned this distinctive title during this actual parade experience for the following reason…. You see, the ‘mouth,’ had been sitting in the truck with a stereo and megaphone blaring Lee Greenwood’s Proud to Be An American for the crowd to enjoy. In between, he would shout out ‘vote for Branan for State Senate’ over and over again. It was loud and fun and effective.
The memories from that day still bring a smile to my face. Well, except for the fact that after the parade I was loading the kids in the car and noticed one of my earrings was missing. Not just any earring, but a little diamond stud that the Senator had given me shortly before he proposed. I opted to not mention this to him…..until he found it in his truck several months later. I don’t think I’ll be wearing any jewelry this year….just comfortable shoes.
Here are some actual photos from this year’s Bethany Parade….toward the end it poured down rain.
Group photo before the parade…