My brother-in-law, Michael, is a funeral fanatic in New Orleans. If there is a Jazz Band, he is there. A few years ago, his two boys made the front page photo of the newspaper as they ran through a graveyard following a parade. His wife was quite surprised to see the picture, seeing as how the boys were supposed to be in school. Needless to say, things got “straightened out” in the Rovaris household. But Saturday funerals are fair game. And when a Chief Mardi Gras Indian died this summer, we were there. Several hundred people showed up for the parade. No Jazz Band – just tambourines, drums, singing voices, and costumes. The Mardi Gras Indian costumes are works-of-art. The Indians spend a year creating them to wear once. Sometimes, 80% of one’s salary goes into the costume.
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