This morning I headed downtown with my kids in tow to set up our chairs for the parade. We were so excited anticipating one of our favorite holidays! When we got downtown around 8AM, however, we saw the signs posted that no chairs could be put out until 6PM this evening or the DPD would confiscate them.
My kids and I loaded our few (4) chairs back in our car and decided to return later. Rules are rules. Or so we thought...
As luck would have it, I needed to be back downtown in the afternoon, so I ran my errand without consideration of the chairs and came back home.
At 5 PM we decided to head downtown to take a walk and wait until 6 to put our chairs out (we figured we should give ourselves a little extra time to find parking, guessing everyone else would be arriving then as well).
I was absolutely shocked that the entire street was already completely lined with chairs, marked off with taped paper on the ground, or chalk writing. Chairs were roped off, bicycle chained or "manned" by those who were placing their chairs out. We approached a few individuals "standing by" and they basically told us to blow off.
I have never felt so offended in this town! Here I could've had my chairs out at 8AM or again at 2PM, but instead I chose to wait for the deadline established by the police department - I would have assumed that was the way things were done here in Danville.
So, here we are at home tonight, with no place for a chair tomorrow, and while this may be trivial to some of you, I think I came away feeling saddened by the character of our community. It seems like this community has decided what they want is more important than playing by the rules.
We'll be at the parade tomorrow, sure we'll find somewhere to enjoy the scene and it will be a great day, but I think Danville is losing some of it's friendly-neighbor town feel when we tell each other to take a hike for doing the right thing.
In all honesty, I think this artificial deadline that obviously wasn't enforcable should be changed to 24 hours before the parade.
If nothing else, please try and be a better neighbor tomorrow.