Mardi Gras in downtown San Diego consisted a party 6 blocks long and 2 blocks wide, 2 parades, 5 outdoor stages with DJs, and a crowd density that impressed even this Hong Konger. I expected large floats, but the street being a narrow two lanes, allowed only bus and truck sized vehicles to pass down the middle with a 8-person thick crowd flanking either side. The first parade at 7:30pm was considerably tamer than the 10:30pm parade, where competition to grab tossed beads was cut throat. It was the equivalent of kids with a pinata, except those who dived for the falling goodies were women equipped with long acrylic nails or 200 lb men. I noticed that the 6'5" guy was accumulating quite a lot of beads.

Photographing was fun; a non stop supply of colors and activity, easily blurred out to show movement on digital film by a slightly longer exposure time. This above pic was at 1/4 sec shutter speed with flash. Challenging circumstances: I alternated between catching beads hurled from paraders (and I must say having ultimate disc experience helped with this) and avoiding beads that came straight for my lens.