Happy Leif Erikson Day

Thank you, Mr. President, for issuing your latest proclamation.

Other than being eager to celebrate having Monday off from work, the Columbus Day holiday has always puzzled me. And my negative memory of Columbus Day is when my Italian-American high school marched in NYC’s Columbus Day parade on the coldest October day the city had ever seen. We weren’t allowed to wear coats, and we had to wait on the side street for two hours (W. 54th, if memory serves me correct) before it was our turn to get in line to march up 5th Avenue. As we know, the side streets are wind tunnels, and when it’s bitter cold and all you’re wearing is a light cotton blouse, polyester school blazer, skirt, and bobby-socks that matched our saddle shoes, it had the mixings for a miserably cold and very long day. I wound up sick as a dog and missing a week of school, with bronchitis and sinusitis, all to celebrate someone who discovered the Bahamas and Cuba.

Leif Erikson statue in Trondheim, Norway

Leif Erikson statue in Trondheim, Norway

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