The spontaneous gathering of characters and their colorful inventiveness make the Easter Sunday bonnet ritual outside St Patrick’s Cathedral one of the best in NYC. The city blocks traffic on fifth avenue from 49th to 57th Street and without any encouragement apart perhaps from Spring fever, the people come. Fabulous homemade creations on happy faces encourage conversation between strangers and of course everyone wants to pose. One native New Yorker with a light bulb on her hat was joining the parade for the first time and when I asked her about the idea behind her bonnet she said hello?! Simple floral arrangements were big with small dogs this year, color coordination was as always a show stopper and selfies with golf stick extensions trumped many a photographer’s view. Paper hats recycled from Macy’s and Starbucks made a frilled foray into the mix this year – a commercial enterprise, but which nevertheless meant tourists could join the fun. Rabbit ears are always a favorite, the simple addition of which to a conservative look can inspire spontaneous silliness. A television reporter in the process of recording her Easter scoop faced the camera and chatted on for some moments before realizing a beaming fellow was jumping around in the background, paws up and ears bouncing. Despite the amusement to onlookers, the joke was lost on her as she directed him out of view, saying ‘this is supposed to be serious’…. Hello?!?
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