I had never taken in our city's Santa Claus parade, now in its twelfth year, but a few days ago, decided it was something I wanted to experience, so despite the soggy forecast, we headed over town yesterday afternoon - my husband, granddaughter and I. Claiming a small strip along the curb with our folded picnic blanket, we sat huddled together drinking hot chocolate under a shared umbrella for over an hour. The unrelenting rain did not dampen the lively energy of the participants or spectators. Waving and singing along, we enjoyed a steady stream of marching bands, colourfully costumed dancers, elaborate floats, and festively decorated horses. After the parade wrapped up with Santa gliding by on his sleigh, we packed up our blanket and strolled back up the sidewalk hand-in-hand with wet bums, rosy cheeks and filled hearts, all agreeing it had been a wonderful outing. Perhaps next year, our grandson can forgo his nap and snuggle in with us to experience it too.