By Cherimie Crane
I celebrated through opening ceremony. I surrendered to the call of Saturday Sandbar. Sunday fun-day morphed with stealth speed into Motown Monday and somehow I am staring at the inevitable end to the first week of Water Festival. Sunscreen was no match for salt water, so my fair, freckled face resembles something in the crawfish family. The conventional wisdom of hydration was misused horrendously as cocktail hour extended beyond reasonable measure. All in all, I see it as a successful venture as I managed to survive with all limbs intact, all friends in tow, and all photos erased as to avoid any morbidly painful Facebook follies.
To my fellow unfortunate souls who must maintain gainful employment during this magical time, I salute you. It is quite acceptable to wear your sunglasses throughout the day, do so with dignity. Reach for your Goody’s powder and Gatorade with conviction. With the right accessories, no one will notice the Koozie still stuck to your derriere. If you find yourself unable to remove those miraculously strong armbands given to us all at the gates, wave them with pride.
To those Water Fest warriors who find themselves apologizing for questionable quotations, candid commentary, or the ever-dreaded wardrobe malfunction: do so with sincerity and speed. Possibly the gods of indulgence will shine down and surround you with like-minded, similarly shamed cohorts. Otherwise, reach for the phone and commence the eating of crow. There is no substitution for the old faithful of penance: blame it on Water Festival, blame it on alcohol, or blame it on your best friend. All three will be by your side for the second week.
We are steam rolling into week two and the grand finale of fun. Push forward my friends. Our gym memberships and bouts of starvation paid off, as we held our breath only in photos. The hundreds of dollars spent to drive a short distance to anchor in a suntan-oiled, boiled peanut-filled, fried chicken-covered oasis of enjoyment pales in comparison to the therapy it will take to fully recover from this coming weekend. Make it count. Embrace the last days of our beloved festival, for you shall have an entire year to curse its very existence, build back your self-respect, burn off those calories of carelessness, and prepare to do it all over again!