Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Sunset at Prien Lake Park

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Yankee's First Mardi Gras Ball

As you know, it’s Mardi Gras season in this part of the world. It never occurred to me that I might want to go to a Mardi Gras Ball. Until we were invited to one. Well, I’m all about new and interesting experiences. Last night we attended the Krewe of Mystique’s 41st annual ball.

Since our arrival to Louisiana over five years ago, Mardi Gras has been a source of curiosity, mystery, and bemusement for me. I’ll be the first to admit that I “don’t get it.” I thought maybe going to a ball would help enlighten me. But no, I still can’t say I completely grasp the concept. But a few words come to mind. Grand pageantry. Giddy merriment. Indulgence. Aching feet. Kind of felt like a prom for grown-ups. I daresay, Bob and I hadn’t been that dressed up since our wedding over 20 years ago. I loved having an excuse to wear some vintage jewelry that had belonged to Bob’s grandmothers, given to me by my mother-in-law. Nor had Bob and I ever danced that much. Ever.

Yesterday afternoon, I had my hair put in an up-do. There was enough hairspray and bobbie pins in my hair last night to hold together a haystack in a hurricane.

When we got home, Bob and I spent an unduly amount of time pulling them all out. I counted – 67 bobbie pins.

So, you know, I don’t know much about Mardi Gras protocol, but I’d been told by a friend who attends no less than a dozen balls each season, maybe more, that it’s not totally unheard of to crash other balls. The Buccaneers were having their ball in the Civic Center room right below Mystique’s. I knew some friends there, so I thought we’d go say Hi. Just briefly, right? But yeah, um . . . no. We were promptly but politely asked to leave. We didn’t realize that no one is allowed at the Buccaneer Ball unless they are wearing proper pirate attire.Where’s an eye patch and a wench corset when you need one, huh.

Our friend Cissie McLeod, who also happened to be crowned Queen last night, graciously invited us to the ball. Her gown was exquisite. I wish we’d taken a photo before she took the mantle (the large ornate collar) off. She looked absolutely radiant and presided over her subjects with appropriate aplomb.

Here she is with two of her three daughters, Sara (L) and Martha.

Indeed, all the costumes were positively delightful – all colorful and sparkly and feathery. I especially loved this costume. I wish she would have held her mask up, but she is holding it down. She’s standing with our friend, Mark Judson, the Queen’s son-in-law and Sara’s husband.

 Happy Mardi Gras!


Jan Newman said...

Wow. You looked marvelous, Angie. So happy you had a good time and danced all night. You don't have to "get" Mardi Gras. Just enjoy it.

Angie said...

Thanks, Jan. And that's right. We did just enjoy ourselves!

Common Household Mom said...

Woo hoo! Looks like a great party! I love your dress, and your up-do looks very sophisticated. When's the next ball?

Angie said...

CHM, that may possibly be the only Mardi Gras ball Bob and I ever attend. To go to a ball, one must belong to a Krewe. Not necessarily something I aspire to do because I'm simply not that social, but also, you have to be invited to join, and that's not likely to happen. Krewe members may invite a couple to a ball, but again, not likely for Bob and I.

Jess * Jessie * Jessy said...

You look beautiful and I'm glad you had a good time. It's not my thing either ... and I've never really understood it. Guess that shows we're from elsewhere, doesn't it? Love the pic of you and the Queen!

Angie Kay Dilmore said...

Thanks, Jess!