Sunday, January 1, 2017

Rose Bowl

In my life I have been to the Rose Bowl Parade three times, and the Rose Bowl twice.  The first was with my family, and was in conjunction with a trip to Disneyland.  This was during my first grade, and my dad took us to California while we were moving away from the farm in Othello.  We eventually ended up in Idaho Falls living with my grandmother for the rest of the year.  Back to the Rose Bowl Parade.  We didn't not arrive early, and so had to scramble for a place we could see the floats and the parade.  The floats were nice, but the most impressive thing was seeing many actors, especially cowboys on horseback.  My older sisters, and I guess myself as well were really impressed with the cast of Bonanza as they rode past on their horses.  I mean, seeing Hoss Cartwright, and Ben and Adam and Little Joe.  That was really something.  
Not my picture, but my memory.  This is labeled 1961.  We were at the parade Jan. 1 1964.
Then as teenagers we returned to the parade two more times.  This time we traveled with the DeBolt family.  carol had moved into Hyrum and we befriended them.  Carol was a big fan of Ohio State, and in the 70s Ohio State played in the Rose Bowl several consecutive years; 1973-1976.  We traveled with them for the 1975 and 1976 rose Bowls.  
Carol was a great fan of Ohio State.  They played four seasons in a row at the Rose Bowl, and we boys went twice a road trips to Pasadena.  Weldon only went with us the second year, as he was on his mission the yer before.  We would arrive in town, early morning on Christmas Eve, and head strait for the beach for a good wading adventure.  We would then establish ourselves along the parade route.
We slept on the street to have a good spot for the parade.  We would camp at the corner of Orange grove Blvd and Colorado Blvd.  The parade turns here (more than a 90 degree turn) which gives you a view of both sides of the floats.  We would be some of the first to arrive, and we would claim our spots with our sleeping bags.  This would be a spot to sleep the night and then also a curbside spot for the parade.  This corner was very popular and the crowd would fill in.  Radio stations also liked this corner and would do the interview on the street.  The grandstands were just before the intersection, so we would get to hear the bands put on their best show.  It could get pretty cold sleeping out on December 31, even if we were in California.  Also there were not got rest room facilities.  the nearest was over a mile away in the Jack-in-the-Box.  Walking down the road we would see homeless people, and other people camped our for the night.  There were even barrels with fires in them for people to get warm.  We would sleep the best we could, but we were always up early so no one could claim our spot along the curb.  
One year hank Aaron was the Grand Marshall of the parade.  This was shortly after he broke the record for home runs.  We always enjoyed the floats, but those with animation and familiar characters were always the best.  
Carol Debolt always brought a big cooler with sandwich fixings for food, so we got by OK.  After the parade, we walked down the hill to the Rose Bowl for the football game.  It wasn't too bad of a walk, closer than that Jack-in-the-Box.  Both years Ohio State lost.  The first year they had won handily the year before against USC.  However this year the lost by one point to USC in a hard fought game.  the next year the lost by about five points to UCLA.  At the time the Rose Bowl pitted the Big 10 Champion against the PAC 10.  Weldon missed the first year, but was with us the second as he had returned from his mission.  
One year the Volkswagen van Carol drove had issues.  We were stopped in the desert for some time for repair.   It would take to long to get an ordered part, so they repaired the alternator with cardboard, and showed me how to do it.  I had to use the cardboard to get a correct gap so the spark plugs would fire.  It actually stopped again and I had to fix it in Las Vegas.  While in Las Vegas I saw somebody following somebody else.  I thought that was weird so followed the person following.  He told me he was an undercover policeman and I shouldn't be following him.   I got the car put back together and it got us home, and then died.

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