November 27, 2010

Black Friday: Bliss, Boxes, and Boats

After a truncated work week and a blissful Thanksgiving Day, I was ready to stroll into the official holiday season with a grin on my face. I woke on the morning of Black Friday -- a day normally set aside for marathon shopping sprees and super sales -- and headed out to the Patchogue Theater for the Performing Arts to see a matinee of Mooseltoe.

Now, there are quite a few Off-Off-Broadway type of theaters on Long Island; Port Jefferson's Theater Three, John Engeman Theater in Northport, Smithtown Theater for the Performing Arts, and the Gateway are a few that immediately spring to mind. Though, the Patchogue Theater definitely ranks among the nicest, being of a quality that one might expect to find on 45th Street in Manhattan. With that in mind, I took my seat in the front mezzanine and reflected on how lucky I was not to be standing on a crowded line at Walmart.

Mooseltoe is a whimsical tale about a moose and his dream to fly with Santa's reindeer. It features a cast of singing and dancing moose, penguins, walruses, elves, a snowball, a mountain that turns into a Moose King, and Santa Claus. The production is lively, colorful, and fun. An hour's worth of holiday delight with a happy ending. An excellent beginning to what would be a eventful day...

Upon returning home after the show, I had the task of taking the Christmas boxes out of the garage. It is so wonderful to lift the lids on cartons that have been sealed for 11 months and see all of those decorations again. It makes my heart feel giddy. A cup of hot cocoa and Nat King Cole in the CD player was all it took and I was ready to spend the afternoon decking the halls!

As the evening rolled around, I took a little break from decorating to attend the First Annual Huntington Harbor Parade of Lights. 

In the crisp November air, I stood on the Huntington docks with the other spectators and watched as a procession of boats sailed into the harbor, all dressed in holiday style. Lights twinkled and shimmered on the surface of the water as giant Santas swayed in the sea breeze. The scene quickly turned into a great celebration as the audience broke into Christmas carols and cheered wildly whenever an elaborately adorned boat would sail by. The captains made sure to blow the foghorns for the groups of onlookers. It seemed that the entire perimeter of Huntington Harbor was lined with people waiting to get a glimpse; I could hear applause coming from across the harbor!

This was a great thing to experience. Being that this was the first year of the event, there weren't many boats involved, though it had such a wonderful atmosphere that I can see it growing over time. I can't wait to see what kinds of boats show up next year! :)

"Is any among you in trouble?
Let them pray.
Is anyone happy?
Let them sing songs of praise."

~James 5:13